There is no question most growers will use Tracker (epoxiconazole + boscalid) or Proline (prothioconazole) this season.
Last year’s experience with both was more than positive.
But with both fighting for market share at the T1 timing, the major question is how should each be targeted?
The answer is not too difficult, according to agronomists – use Proline where septoria is the main target; Tracker has the edge in eyespot situations.
Three-quarters of Bryce Rham’s customers’ wheat received Proline at T1 last spring, the Shropshire-based independent agronomist says.
“I was very pleased with it.
It did an extremely good job.”
The rest of the crops received either Fandango (fluoxastrobin + prothioconazole) or Tracker.
“Control from Tracker wasn’t as good as Proline.”
But while Mr Rham was slightly disappointed with Tracker’s performance against septoria, it is very good for controlling eyespot, he says.
“If you’ve got bad eyespot and it’s not a very dirty crop, then my feeling is to use Tracker.
But you need to get it on early, as I feel the boscalid reduces its kickback activity, contrary to what BASF says.”
Lincs-based, Bridget Carroll from Fleetmarsh Agronomy is a Proline fan.
“Last year we went at 0.4-0.6 litres/ha – it doubtless has the edge for septoria control, produces fewer whiteheads and has very good activity on most diseases.
“This year I’m going with it on early drilled, forward wheat, whereas on late drilled, more backward crops, I will use 0.4 litres/ha Opus (epoxiconazole) + 1 litre/ha Bravo (chlorothalonil).”
Matford Arable Systems’ agronomist, Neil Potts agrees prothioconazole appears more suited to high septoria pressure situations.
“Historically we don’t have a major eyespot problem here in the southwest, whereas septoria is a massive problem.
Last year we got outstanding results from using prothioconazole + spiroxamine (Helix).”
But its vital to use it with chlorothalonil, he says.
Aberdeenshire-based Robertson Crop Services’ agronomist Ron Paterson will be majoring on Tracker at T1, after taking out early septoria infections with a T0 spray.
“We use a T0 to mop up septoria early, so then we can go in with Tracker at T1, which gives better eyespot control and continues the septoria protection.
It’s a strong product that worked quite well last year and is not a strobilurin, so we can save the strob to use with Proline at T2.”