Irrigation At Tumut
The Riverine Grazier (Hay)
20 January 1905
Mr. R. Rivers, a dairyman at Gilmore, near Tumut, has installed an irrigation plant - a 3 h.p. engine, with a centrifugal pump - on the bank of the Gilmore Creek, at a cost of £130.
The water is lifted 10ft., and run through galvanised iron pipes a distance of 30 yards, then dropped into a wooden trough, to prevent corrosion of the ground, and sent in cut drains over tho paddock.
As an experiment, a small area of 10 acres only is being treated, but if successful Mr Rivers intends to drain another 10 acres in the same paddock on the flat.
The land grows maize (for cow feed), soja, bean, cow pea, feed pumpkins, and cow melons. The upkeep of the engine costs one pint of kerosene per hour, and the capacity of the pump is 10,000 gallons per hour. The plant will work all day without attention.
This farm affords a splendid illustration of the effects of irrigation.
The Tumut River is capable of an immense scheme of irrigation. Engineer M'Kay, a Government official, visited the district recently for purpose of reporting on the question. The average rainfall, from gathering ground (1500 odd square miles) of the Tumut irrigation and conservation scheme is 42 inches.
Gravitation could be brought to bear on all the river flats, and a striking example of the source of wealth flowing to the sea in the Tumut River is afforded at Blowering and Tumut Plains, the river cutting the centre of those properties.
A number of farmers are watching the result of Mr Rivers' experiments, and no doubt irrigation will shortly become more general.