How We Do What We Do
An inquiry by email about how we do what we do resulted in Jim putting pen to paper: We regard ourselves as grass farmers; we try to follow the principles of Holistic Management and have found their planned grazing principles probably the most powerful tool we have experienced in our farming life.
We use beef cattle as the way to package our pastures into a form we can market, and have over the years moved that to a largely stud (Ardcairnie
Angus) operation. Our farming system would be regarded as ‘regenerative’ these days but we have been using this concept for over twenty years.
We have come to understand that much of conventional farming practices can have a negative effect on what benefits nature can provide for us, so
we try to enhance what nature can do wherever we can. We also use AMF fertilisers strategically with the aim of increasing the nutrient inventory of our soils where we feel there is a need. We also brew up some shuttles of beneficial anaerobic bugs as a way to increase the biodiversity of the soil organisms and have been using Biodynamic Preparations for the last four years.
We have put the production of our own biodynamic preps into the too hard basket because of the workload we have, and source them from Biodynamic Agriculture Australia (BAA = News Leaf). Our guide in this venture is Deanna Forster from Denmark who organises the supply of products we need. A friend from Kendenup has the flow forms and spraying equipment and he comes up in Autumn and Spring to apply the preps.
We have the impression that the BD preps are contributing to the overall soil and animal health of the farm as part of our integrated approach. We don’t try and cover every part of the farm with the sprays – we cover our 3,600 acres with three tanks of sprays so we are basically distributing the ‘essence’ of the preps over a large area. BD techniques are constantly evolving and are a good fit in the overall toolbox for the regenerative farmer.
Jim & Pam McGregor
P: +61 8 98 310 401
M: +61 417 942 326
Our stud is located on Maybenup at 22327 Albany Highway just south of the town of Kojonup in the Great Southern of Western Australia, approximately 240kms south of Perth.