1882-1904

Highlights

Roseworthy Agricultural College commmences (1882)

1881 - JD Custance appointed Professor of Agriculture
1882 - Olive Hill Farm bought as demonstration farm
1884 - Olive Hill Farm becomes Roseworthy College, student facilities developed
1885 - Diploma of Agriculture

Research at Roseworthy

1887 - Custance identified the importance of phosphate fertilisers on wheat (yields had been progressively falling)
1890 - Widespread adoption following demonstration by Correll Bros, Minlaton, of sowing seed with phosphates
1905 - Roseworthy College affiliated with University of Adelaide, teaching undergraduate agriculture
In later years, Cereal Breeding was a major pursuit

The Agriculture Bureaux

1887 -Joint Parliamentary Committee to “inquire into measures to encourage among farmers …. products specially adapted to the soil and climate of South Australia that would give the greatest profits, promote employment and increase the railway traffic”

Albert Molyneux, editor of the Garden and Field since 1875 suggested creating an Agricultural Bureau movement to encourage development of South Australian agriculture.

Initially, the best 12 farmers in each district were invited to form a branch of the Agricultural Bureau of SA. At its peak, there were 400 branches. Today, 150 branches still operate.

A science based department of Agriculture begins

1891-5 - Experiments by Lowrie (RAC) on farms Millicent, Eudunda, Clare, Maitland, Gladstone, Black Rock
1892 - AJ Perkins appointed Chief Viticulturist
1899 - Importation of Vines prohibited – Phylloxera Board
1902 - A Department of Agriculture started

Research Farms at Parafield (designed as a mortuary railway station), Murray Bridge, Kybybolite 1905, Turretfield, Loxton, Veitch, Blackwood and Hackney orchards 1908, Berri 1917

AEV Richardson appointed Assistant Director of Experiments

Main aspects of the era

  • Industry improvements
  • Phosphate fertilisers
  • Stump-jump plough
  • Agricultural Bureau movement started (1888)
  • Farmer-driven varietal selection and breeding
  • Capital works by government for agricultural development
  • South East drains (1862, 1880s and beyond)
  • Draining swamps (Mypolonga, 1881)
  • Irrigation infrastructure (Riverland: Chaffey Brothers/Renmark Irrigation Trust)