Like many places around the world, hemp is a growing industry. Hemp production in Australia is forecasted to be valued at three million dollars by 2023. Hemp In Australia, hemp is grown in every state as an irrigated crop. The success of growing industrial hemp depends on the varieties and agronomy. Hemp is cultivated for its fibres and seeds and can sometimes be harvested for a dual purpose.
Types of Soil
Hemp can grow in a variety of different soil types. Hemp growth performs best in fertile, well-drained, neutral to slightly alkaline, and silt loam soils. For quicker growth rates of the hemp, the soil needs good moisture and has the capacity to hold many nutrients. Over-watered soil could damage the growth of the hemp due to the sensitivity to compacted soil.
The best growing climates are temperate, subtropical, and tropical. Optimum temperatures range from 15 to 27 degrees Celsius. It is considered a short-day plant. During its growing phase, it requires high light. The summer months are the best months to grow hemp.
Planting and Management
Prepared seedbeds, well-fertilised soils, and regular irrigation will help create the best production conditions for the crop. Hemp has the ability to be sown October through April. When hemp is grown for its fibre, they should be sown as soon as possible. On the other hand, when hemp is being grown for its seed, it is better to be sown later so the stalk height will be minimal. The density of the plant is very important since it will influence the fibre content. 250 plants per square metre are the recommended distance for fibre production. Depending on how much rainfall occurs, the crops will require between three to six millilitres of irrigation water per hectare.
When harvesting for fibre, it typically takes about 70-90 days after they have been planted. Harvesting for the hemp plants seeds usually will happen four to six weeks later than harvesting fibres. Hemp can be sewn by conventional disc drills and then harvested by sickle-bar mowers and hay swathers.
The production of hemp is a complicated process and should be done by licensed growers. Hemp has a wide range of applications and it is becoming a valuable crop in Australia.