Oakford cucumber farm proposal chopped

Oakford cucumber farm proposal chopped

HOPES of growing Lebanese cucumbers in Oakford were hosed down by the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) but an amended proposal was due for consideration by the Serpentine Jarrahdale Shire council on August 22.

The SAT decided the development proposal should be classified as ‘hydroponic’ and not the ‘floriculture-extensive’ it claimed to be, and therefore was a prohibited use within the Shire’s Groundwater Protection Zone.

The Tribunal found the proposal did not involve the use of soil, and that the cultivation of the plants using sawdust as a medium and providing nutrients through the water exclusively must involve the use of a hydroponic system within the ordinary meaning of that term.

However, if the proposed cucumber involved the growing of cucumbers in soil it would not involve the use of a hydroponic system.

An amended proposal would best fit within ‘floriculture-extensive’ category and would be capable of approval under the Shire’s town planning scheme .

Kieu Family Pty Ltd recently purchased Lot 14 (121) King Road Oakford and wants to grow cucumbers under tunnel houses on a quarter of the 4ha property which is within the priority 2 area of the Jandakot Mound Public Drinking Water Source Area.

It amended its application which was referred to the Department of Water and the Department of Agriculture which had no objections, subject to a condition ensuring now process water or material is to be discharged to the land at any time.

The amended application has not been referred to adjoining landowners for comment as at SAT it was agreed that the substitution of sawdust with soil would not materially change the proposal and as the built form and land use remains unchanged, it would not result in any new objections or satisfy the previous objections.