Success Stories in Campaspe

New sports facility for Echuca and district.
2012/03/02 | Sophie Bruns

The construction of a $1.15 million hockey and tennis facility on the grounds of Echuca College in Echucahas recently been completed. The facility includes a full sized hockey field which will become the home ground for Echuca River Rats Hockey Club and 12 tennis courts which will be used by the Echuca South Tennis Club. The project was due to be completed in November but severe storms damaged the surface, delaying the opening to late February. The completion has come at the right time for the local hockey club who were struggling to field teams in the Goulburn Valley Hockey Association. The club had been travelling to Shepparton and Bendigo to compete and this new facility will only strengthen the competition. The new facility will now act as a regional hockey hub and incorporate teams from as far afield as Deniliquin, Cohuna and Rochester. Campaspe Shire Deputy Mayor Cr Marion Riley said the project is a great example of a multi use facility, with partnerships between the hockey association, hockey club, Tennis club, Echuca College, State Government and the Shire of Campaspe.” "Located within the Echuca College grounds enable the facility to have maximum use, during the week as well as weekends." Cr Riley recognised that the project had been very complex to deliver and congratulated all involved and despite a number of set-backs, it was delivered on budget. The project received $500,000 in funding from the State Government's Sport and Recreation Major Facilities fund and other funding partners included Shire of Campaspe $350,000, Echuca College 150, 000, Goulburn Valley Hockey Association 40,000 Echuca Moama Hockey Club 30,000 and Echuca South Tennis Club $20,000.

Avacado's grow well in new area
2012/01/31 | Sophie Bruns

The decision to plant an avacado orchard in an area not traditionally recognised for their growth has been quite successful for Andrew and Sarah Crossman. In 2005 the busy couple planted 210 trees on a property west of Echuca and seven years on their dream has turned into reality. The plantings now cover 7 hectares, 1000 trees and 11 different varieties which are grown to fruit almost year round. The couple are now able to sell fruit from June right through to March. The trees are a picture of health- glossy green leaves and full of fruit- the northern Victorian climate obviously agrees with them. “Avocado’s grow in a wide range of soils but they prefer sand – they have to be well drained and you can’t afford to have them sit in water for any length of time. Our climate is very suitable but unlike Queensland we also have the added risk of frost and extreme heat.” The orchard is watered with micro sprays on drip lines and is heavily mulched. “Avocados are a high water usage tree as they get older so in the future we will invest in moisture probes to help with water efficiencies and overhead sprays to help cool the trees. “When the temperature gets above 37, the sprays help create humidity which prevents heat stress and stops fruit drop.” The couple are also looking at a furtigation system so they can fertilise the trees using the drip line. Eventually the orchard will get to the stage where it will produce commercial quantities of fruit. Currently the Crossman’s sell their bounty at local markets, to restaurants and to the fruit and vegetable shop in Echuca. “Growing avocados is time consuming but rewarding. The one thing that scares us about the future of the industry is imported fruit- it has the potential to shut the whole thing down. It is so important that Australians support the Australian agricultural industry.” The busy couple also have other varieties of fruit trees in the orchard including stone fruit and apples, as well as berries and grapes. They also pick zucchini flowers which are sold to restaurants in Echuca. “Our original drive behind establishing the orchard was to value adds to the property, and create an income stream that has the potential for us to live off in the future” “At the moment we will focus on the local market and wholesaling to Melbourne and Sydney

WiSA saves water
2011/09/16 | Sophie Bruns

Echuca company markets their water saving technologies here in Australia and overseas.

Echuca company saves water
2011/09/16 | Sophie Bruns

Water saving technology is used here in Australia and overseas.

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