Rainfall Simulator Extension Tour: ‘Forest Park’ Warwick

Level 1 General description


A rainfall simulator was used to examine the influence of different management options on infiltration of rainfall and runoff.

Methods (brief)

Soil present on site was a deep black clay, the soil was dry with some cracks present in the no-till bay; no cracks were apparent in the cultivated area.

The rainfall simulator was applied to the following four plots:

A) Cultivated/heavy stubble. The soil was cultivated with a shovel to create conditions similar to those left behind a scarifier. Straw cover was added to simulate a previous heavy wheat crop (cover 80%).

B) No-till/light stubble. The soil was not disturbed and some cracks were present (cover 15%).

C) No-till/scarified. The soil was previously not cultivated, but given a ‘cultivation’ with a shovel immediately prior to rainfall application (cover 0%).

D) Cultivation/bare. Similar to A but left with little cover (cover 10%).

Key findings (brief)

  • Stubble cover and/or reduced tillage reduced runoff from intense rainfall (Figure 1).
  • Nearly 50% of rainfall was lost as runoff when the soil surface was finely cultivated and had no stubble cover.


‘Forest Park’ Warwick

Related studies

‘Orion Downs’ Orion; ‘Enderley’ - Gindie; ‘Kurrajong’ Capella; ‘Marylands’ Retro; ‘Innisfree’ Wolfgang; ‘Tarvellon’ Kilcummin; ‘Bundella’ Wallumbilla; ‘Twin-Butts’ Wandoan; ‘The Limes’ Chinchilla; ‘Moruya’ Goondiwindi

Key references and sources of this data synthesis

These data summaries have been extracted from:

  1. Cawley ST, Hamilton NA, Freebairn DM, Markey LJ. Viable Farming Systems Group Project: Evaluating fallow management options by using rainfall simulation. Queensland Department of Primary Industries October 1992.