The International Society for Horticultural Science, Agriculture Victoria Research, and the University of Melbourne, presents a science symposium on irrigation of horticulture crops.

Australia 18 - 23 January 2026

Sun dial orchard

Tatura SmartFarm - Agriculture Victoria Research

Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action

Google maps: 255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura, Victoria 3616 Australia

Crop focus: tree fruits, vines, berries, and vegetables

The XI International Symposium on Irrigation of Horticultural Crops is a 6-day event (18 – 23 January 2026), includes plenary sessions, keynote, oral and poster presentations, workshop meetings, technical tours, conference dinner, and social activities.

The Symposium is targeting approximately 130 delegates from around the world, such as European countries, United States, Middle East, North Africa, Southern Africa, South America, and other regions where irrigation is paramount for horticultural production. The Symposium is held under the auspices of the ISHS, a global network comprising over 67000 individuals, universities, governments, institutions, libraries and commercial companies, from approximately 50 member countries.

The Symposium will provide an opportunity for renewed engagement between researchers, academics and industry technical experts in a welcoming environment at the Tatura SmartFarm.

The Symposium conveners will be supported by an Organising Committee and a Scientific Committee. Papers presented at the Symposium will be peer-reviewed prior to publication of the Symposium proceedings: Acta Horticulturae (expected mid-late 2026). Dr Scalisi, Dr Goodwin and Prof. Zarco-Tejada will be the Editors of the Acta Horticulturae volume of scientific papers presented at the Symposium.

The Symposium will be broadly advertised to allow participation among growers and industry stakeholders to improve technology adoption and overcome the challenges linked to climate change.

The Tatura SmartFarm is well positioned to host the Symposium, being in Australia’s ‘food bowl’ for the horticultural industry. Tatura is nearby to commercial apple, pear and stone fruit orchards and packhouses, and vineyards and winery’s (e.g., Nagambie region) for the technical tour to showcase irrigation technologies and strategies used in commercial orchards. The Goulburn River and national parks and local cultural centres and museums (e.g., SAM, Botanic, Motor, Fauna Park) offer social activities for the Symposium attendees.

The topics of the symposium align with the strategic view of the Department of Environment, Energy and Climate Action. Hosting the XI International Symposium on Irrigation of Horticultural Crops will bring international scientists and cutting-edge research to the state of Victoria, contributing to the overall Australian fruit, nut and grape industries. In recent years Agriculture Victoria Research (AVR) has developed partnerships with International and National Universities. Scholars, academics and students are welcome to our research facilities for collaborations and innovative projects on the use of new technologies. Agriculture Victoria is greatly committed to the establishment of sustainable water management in rural regions of Australia. Through this conference, Agriculture Victoria aims to advance Australia’s collaboration with International research groups.

Under the National Primary Industries Research Development and Extension Framework, AVR is committed to Major Priority for almonds and Support for pome fruit (apples and pears), stone fruit (peach, nectarine, plum, apricot) and table grapes. These strategies assist in the design and scale of research effort and projects that deliver step change improvements through innovation for enduring profitability and enhancing the response and management of plant pest and disease outbreaks.

AVR plays a key role in delivery of innovation for economic growth in Victoria’s agriculture through leading science and strong science capacity and development of partnerships with AgTech Irrigation ecosystems.

The project’s strength lies in the relationships with the international scientific community, local industry groups, industry peak bodies, AgTech irrigation sponsors and exhibitors and with the other likely R&D players. The establishment of a project organising committee and scientific committee will serve to promote and communicate state-of-the-art innovations and outputs to industry. The publication of the Symposium proceedings (electronic Acta Horticulturae) will provide an ongoing scientific resource to researchers, academics and industry technical experts.

The Australian fruit industries will benefit from the following Symposium activities:

  • A workshop / panel discussion with fruit growers and scientists on advances in variable rate irrigation, irrigation scheduling and decision support systems.
  • A field day that will showcase the most advanced irrigation technology in the Goulburn Valley.
  • Demonstrations and presentations on innovative sensors that are being commercially used overseas but not yet available in Australia.

International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS)

XI International Symposium on Irrigation of Horticultural Crops | International Society for Horticultural Science (


ISHS Groups involved:


Alessio Scalisi
Dr. Alessio Scalisi

Tatura SmartFarm, Agriculture Victoria Research
255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura, Victoria 3616 Australia

Dr Ian Goodwin at the Tatura Pear Field Laboratory
Dr. Ian Goodwin

Tatura SmartFarm Agriculture Victoria Research
255 Ferguson Rd, Tatura, Victoria 3616 Australia

Prof. Pablo J. Zarco-Tejada

Professor Pablo J. Zarco-Tejada

SAFES, Faculty of Science, and Department of Infrastructure Engineering
Faculty Engineering & Information Technology
University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria 3052 Australia

University of Melbourne - Profile: Professor of Precision Agriculture