Farmer pumps tractor exhaust into soil to boost yields

Mick Dennis, an innovative Australian farmer, pumps his tractor's exhaust fumes into the soil to boost the yield and health of his crops.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

FARMER Mick Dennis believes a unique crop planting method that pumps his tractor's exhaust fumes into the soil to boost the yield and health of his crop is the way of the future.

Mr Dennis, from Birregurra near Colac, says the technique reduced the need for fertilizers and produced a healthier, often bigger yield, by assisting in the soil's biological processes and enhancing root growth and microbial activity.

''Everybody has to be responsible and look after rural industries. The farmer has to change his ways and if he does the right thing, he will get rewarded,'' he said.

The relatively new method, which was invented by Canadian farmer and automotive mechanic Gary Lewis, arrived in Australia in 2007 and is practiced by just 170 farmers worldwide. Mr Dennis, 39, who worked as a contract farmer in Tanzania for 11 years, discovered the Bio-Agtive tractor kits at an Australian precision farming conference in 2008.

If the international trials, fertilizer cost savings and positive environmental impacts of reducing carbon emissions and fertilizer pollution are anything to go by, farming could be on the verge of a revival. One 4000-hectare Mildura farm has reported a saving of $300,000 per season.

For more, see: Farmer pumped about improving crop quality

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