SPRING BARLEY drillers have the chance to benefit from a new added-value approach to seed treatment this season, following just-in-time approval of Aurigen Gold.

For the first time it allows growers to apply Beret Gold (fludioxonil) with just tebuconazole (as in Raxil), rather than having to apply two fully formulated seed treatments, which can be prohibitively expensive.

The co-application offers control of fusarium and Microdochium seedling blight, leaf stripe, loose smut and seed-borne net blotch, says supplier Syngenta.

“Farmers will know about fusarium this season – after wet conditions during flowering led to high levels in many crops, and some samples were rejected due to pink grain,” says Syngenta”s Martin Weiss.

“If conditions are favourable, seedling blight and snow mould, caused by fusarium, can have a big impact on crop establishment.”

Minimum seed rate advised with Aurigen Gold is 125kg/ha and drilling into cloddy, capped seedbeds should be avoided, he adds. Price is said to be competitive.