Soil moisture monitoring of pastures

Agriculture Victoria has installed several soil moisture probes on a range of soil and pasture types across Victoria.

Soil moisture probes have helped with making early decisions in the cropping industry for some time.

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We regularly publish our updated findings in the soil moisture monitoring newsletter.

March 2021 - Soil moisture monitoring - pastures

Agriculture Victoria soil moisture monitoring sites

Dairy farm with soil moisture monitoring setupThe probes are capacitance enviropro probes. They are 80 centimetres long, have eight sensors internally and provide hourly soil water content values and temperature readings every 10 centimetres.

These are collecting information on water infiltration after rain events and plants using water as they grow dry matter (particularly in the absence of rain).

The probes are factory calibrated in a light soil medium. They have been field calibrated to the soil type in the paddocks and reflect a moisture percentage based of the maximum and minimum soil moisture available to plants.  This has been determined by monitoring over many years and a range of seasons.

Different soil types at each site means they cannot be directly compared to other sites and are best assessed individually. All sites are currently useful to show relative changes of moisture down through the profile for soil types/plant species listed at each site.

Map of Victoria showing soil moisture probe sites, list of towns to follow

The soil moisture probes are located in:

  • Lawloit
  • Pigeon Ponds
  • Dartmoor
  • Jancourt
  • Baynton
  • Greta
  • Longwarry
  • Yarram
  • Bairnsdale.
Page last updated: 25 Oct 2023