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Down and Dirty

Living Soils Improve Wool Performance

Thursday, February 09, 2012
An excerpt from the Australia Wool Network Newsletter

AWN Network News thought it was time to revisit a couple we met four years ago.

Bill and Rhonda Daly run a mixed-farming operation on their property “Milgadara”, near Young in southern NSW. They run 5,000 Grogansworth-blood merino sheep, with that number maintained since our last visit. They also produce prime lambs, trade cattle and run a broad-acre farming operation.

On top of this they operate “YLAD Living Soils” from their property. The business is now in its seventh year of operation, going from strength-to-strength with a variety of new products. The focus of “YLAD Living Soils” is to provide a range of products and services that can restore the mineral and microbial balance in the soil. 

The natural products promote the activity of fungi and microbes in the soil, virtually eliminating the need for the use of artificial fertilisers, chemicals and pesticides. Rhonda Daly said the products created by “YLAD” are not only good for the “bottom line”, they are also good for the environment. “The word has spread because our business grew 100 per cent last year with clients spread across the length and breadth of the Australian mainland,” Mrs Daly said. 

New products including “Humified Compost”, “Compost Tea”, and the “Compost Turners”, which creates compost blends. These new products complement the blends and soil test kits the company has always produced and sold. 

Rhonda Daly said it all begins with the soil, no matter what enterprise you are in. The proof is in the pudding at “Milgadara”. “From a wool point-of-view, our records show an improvement in tensile strength and wool cuts since the adoption of biological products on our farm. We’ve had positive feedback from the wool trade regarding the “density” of our wool. This appears to be because of our improved pasture production, along with Grogansworth breeding/bloodline over the last 20 years,” Mrs Daly said.

The improvements have also flowed through to crop production on the Daly’s property. “Our performance is backed up by positive feedback from a growing band of satisfied clients,” she said. 

Bill and Rhonda regularly hold field days to discuss biological farming, often featuring guest speakers from around the world. They aim to hold an event in August. 

When we first featured “YLAD” in Network News, Bill and Rhonda offered to run workshops for smaller groups. That offer still stands for readers of Network News.