HEAVENS ABOVE: Warra farmer Brendan Taylor.
HEAVENS ABOVE: Warra farmer Brendan Taylor. Matthew Newton

Solid drenching gives farmers a 'confidence boost'

EXTENSIVE falls of up to 100mm have given farmers a confidence boost leading into the winter, according to Warra farmer Brendan Taylor.

The much-needed soaking follows an extremely dry summer and has built up the moisture profile of soils around the district - important for when the planting of winter crops begins around early May.

The Western Downs copped the edges of ex-tropical cyclone Debbie late last week, as the low pressure system moved down the coast.

The remnants of the cyclone brought a steady drenching to the district, with Mr Taylor saying he received around 80-90mm on his property, Broadlea, 10km north of Warra.

"It sort of varied from 75-100mm in a reasonable average across the district, that's arguably the biggest single fall of rain in possibly two years," Mr Taylor said.

With the Condamine River peaking at 6.2m in Warwick last Friday, all that water is now making its way downstream, past Chinchilla.

The Chinchilla Weir has begun spilling over and at 11am on Tuesday, the river was at a height of 6.5m and still rising.

"The river's had a really good run in it and irrigators are pumping like mad," Mr Taylor said.

"Anyone that's got irrigation associated with the river would be rubbing their hands together, I'd imagine."

While the rain would have put a dampener on the cotton picking, potentially discolouring some crops, Mr Taylor said a bit of sun would whiten up those plantings that were yet to be picked.

Looking to the coming season, Mr Taylor said he hoped for a little bit more rain in early May, before he gets into planting barley and chickpeas.

"The price of chickpeas is still really strong and there will be another significant planting of chickpeas right across the Downs purely on the back of the price," Mr Taylor said.


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