Application of Controlled Traffic Farming in the Low Rainfall Zone


Over the past decade adoption of Controlled Traffic Farming (CTF) in Central Queensland has risen from 40 to 60 per cent. However, in many other mainly low rainfall zones (LRZ) of Australia (Mallee, SA Mid North and Lower EP, Central and Eastern WA) adoption of CTF is still at, or below 10% (Umbers, 2016). There is relatively little research on the benefits of CTF in these LRZ. Therefore, in 2014 a multi‑organisational (GRDC, DJPR, SARDI, ACTFA, SPAA) research and extension project was established in collaboration with BCG and four other farming groups (CWFS, MSF, UNFS, and EPARF) to study soil, crop, and system impacts from machinery trafficking in the south-eastern Australian LRZ.

The project ‘Application of controlled traffic in the low rainfall zone’ used a balanced combination of research and development (R&D) to answer growers’ questions about CTF and provide the information they need to make informed decisions about whether to invest in adopting the system on their farms. Based on the results of the R&D, the extension component of the project delivered knowledge, skills and support to growers to enable them to fully assess the merits of CTF application in their farm business and where applicable, help them adopt CTF in whole or in part.


Over five years (2015 to 2019), this project provided grain growers and advisors of the Southern Region LRZ with the tools and knowledge needed to assess any benefits and costs of investing in CTF systems.

Growers who assessed the benefits of adopting CTF on their farms were featured in case studies. Find out more about their systems here:

CTF Case Studies – Darrell Boxall
CTF Case Studies – Chris Leed
CTF Case Studies – Linc Lehmann