26 October 2001

Best to cultivate worst fields first

WITH much land badly mauled last year and already wetter than normal, cereal growers are being advised to examine soils before sowing.

Try to pinpoint fields that need extra care to improve their structure and, provided cultivation conditions are favourable, correct the problems and drill them first, advises Ian Bradley of the recently formed National Soil Resources Institute.

"Where soils are in good condition, fields should be considered as lower priority and put on the back burner," says Mr Bradley

The NSRI was formed in August, combining groups from the Soil Survey & Land Research Centre, the Institute of AgriTechnology and some staff from the Institute of Water and Environment. &#42