28 August 1998

Sulphur boost for rape yield

SULPHUR has helped one Wilts farmer raise rape yield by over 1t/ha.

On Richard Butlers East Wick Farm near Marlborough, Apex yielded 2.93t/ha (23.7cwt/acre) when given 200kgN/ha, but 3.99t/ha (32.3cwt/acre) when 38kgSO3/ha was added in the form of ammonium sulphate.

The replicated trial conducted by Levington Agriculture for Hydro Agri also showed that raising sulphur input to 100kgSO3/ha only added a further 0.05t/ha (0.4cwt/acre) of yield.

"This shows the value of applying the optimum rate," says Hydros Jim Lewis. Nitrogen and sulphur soil reserves had been checked to 90cm in the winter.

"Without the sulphur yield would have been around 3t/ha, which would have been acceptable five years ago, but not today," says Mr Butler. &#42