Another stubborn ridge of low pressure has brought over 120mm of rain to these parts over the last ten days bringing field work to a standstill. Whilst it’s still early enough to get cereals drilled and established successfully, some of this land is going to need quite a few days of dry weather before we can even think of getting back onto it.

Some wheat has been drilled, going into good conditions before the rain came. It has been quite slow to emerge and the wet weather has re-activated the slugs leading to some severe surface grazing. With high slug pellet usage and high levels of rainfall I fear we will be hearing of pollution issues as time goes on. All we can urge is that the stewardship guidelines are adhered to and that slug pellets are used judiciously.

Quite a lot of wheat has been drilled without getting its programmed pre-emergence spray, which is probably just as well given the rain we’ve had since. Putting them on post – emergence in most situations is OK, it’s just that we have to remember their efficacy on emerged grassweeds is severely compromised. At the moment the thought of getting a sprayer out on anything seems miles away.

Oilseed rape has for the most part reluctantly come through the ground and is just beginning to grow away. Because it’s been late and slow partridge damage has been awful. (Bless their hearts).

It also lays the plants open to higher risk of phoma being an issue and I shall be treating it (probably with flusilazole) as soon as I see it. I shall also be trying this early use of carbetamide that’s being plugged by Makhteshim-Agan UK in certain fields where I’ve struggled with blackgrass control in the past. We shall see.