Harvest progress is rather stop start. We have beenplagued by a soft, warm southerly flow for much of the recentperiod – blight conditions, not conducive to goodcombining.

Barley yields are good, but in this area we are havingpre-germination problems with spring varieties. The rejection rateon well-priced contracts has been high with similar barley findinga buyer on the spot market, albeit commanding a relatively smallpremium to feed.

Moistures have been high, so careful drying or conditioning is apriority for maintaining quality.

Looking to next year, it is good to see oilseed rape beingestablished and emerging quickly in the moist conditions. An earlypost-emergence herbicide based around metazachlor should be plannedon crops established by broadcasting.

Where ground is ploughed and sown conventionally a pre-emergencewill be more effective where populations of cleavers, shepherd’spurse, poppies or hedge mustard are expected.

If volunteer cereals are an issue, get them early as they canquickly out compete the emerging rape. If blackgrass is evident,keep to a higher rate graminicide and be prepared to go back witheither carbetamide or propyzamide later.

Our local HGCA Monitor Farm is broadcastingoilseed rape in bands behind each leg of a subsoiler with a dose ofDAP applied to the seeded band at the same time.This should give the crop the best chance to make good tap rootdepth and enough sideways space to produce decent laterals.As with any establishment method, consider your seed size and alterthe rate appropriately.

Early cut wheat is weighing well but most of the late-sownpatchy crops are still to cut. We need a better spell of weatherfrom now on to rectify some soil damage on those fields, which havehad a hammering from the past two wet autumns.

If you are considering more wheat this autumn then give somethought to using Jockey (fluquinconazole +prochloraz) or Latitude (silthiofam) dependingon variety or slot and get some in early.

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