7 June 2002

Min-tillage beet plays catch up

SUGAR beet sown following non-inversion tillage is playing catch up with conventional establishment plots at Morley Research Centre.

However, the delayed emergence seems to have been a transitory effect only and yield results remain to be seen, says Morleys Martin Lainsbury.

Early plant counts showed establishment on ploughed and pressed land of 90 plants/chain. Plots sown where a Simba Solo replaced the plough in the autumn had 62 plants/chain and where a flat lift and Terra discs were used in the autumn there were only 22 plants/chain.

"It was purely down to available moisture in the seed-bed at time of drilling – the flat lift plots were a bit cobblier. But they have evened up now," notes Mr Lainsbury.

The work is the first year of a four-year BBRO sponsored trial which will look at the environmental as well as financial impact of non-inversion tillage, including effects on following cereal crops. &#42