Hillston almond orchards
The almond orchards owned by RFF at Hillston, NSW, are situated close to the Lachlan River. Recent rainfall events have caused flooding along the river, affecting towns such as Forbes.
As previously reported by RFM, the flood waters are expected to travel down the river to Hillston over the next fortnight. The river height is currently 2.71m at Hillston Weir and is forecast to peak at 3.0 metres around 20 October. This level is considered manageable, and thus unlikely to materially affect the RFF owned orchards. The flood waters are not expected to reach the 3.3 metre level experienced in the major floods of 1990.
When developing the three orchards at Hillston, RFM referenced aerial images of the 1990 flood and planted the orchards outside of prior flood zones. Earthen levy banks are also constructed in areas that could be subject to inundation.
Given the possibility of further rainfall, and uncertainty as to the exact flood path, RFM and lessees are increasing the height of several levees on the Hillston properties.
Other RFF assets
RFF’s poultry farms and vineyards are also located in zones that have recently experienced heavy rains and localised flooding. These assets have not experienced any damage nor are they likely to due to controls in place.
RFM will provide updates on the RFM website over coming weeks as the Lachlan River flood waters travel towards the Hillston area.