Story: Topdressing

First topdressing trials

The first aerial topdressing trials were made at Ōhakea in 1948. A New Zealand Air Force Avenger torpedo bomber was fitted with a reserve petrol tank modified to carry and release fertiliser. Trays were laid on the ground to measure the rate and spread of the fertiliser. Conclusions were so encouraging that further trials were planned – and the aerial topdressing industry was born.

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Archives New Zealand - Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
Reference: Weekly Review 370. National Film Unit, 1948

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How to cite this page:

John Maber, 'Topdressing - Origins of aerial topdressing', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 28 September 2023)

Story by John Maber, published 24 Nov 2008