Attention turns to ear sprays

WHEAT GROWERS have been advised not to skimp on ear sprays as crops race on in the warm weather.

In many crops, flag leaves have fully emerged and ears are showing, according to the latest reports on Crop Monitor.

Septoria symptoms on leaves 2 and 3 show T1 sprays did not do a very good job, and growers are being urged to protect crops well with the T3.

“There is a very high septoria pressure this year,” according to ADAS pathologist Bill Clark in the latest national report.

“Ear sprays will be very important in topping up the fungicide on the flag-leaf and leaf 2.”

He advises tebuconazole and metconazole give good control of fusarium.

“But rates must be sensible otherwise little control will be achieved.”

Mildew continues to be a concern, notes Mr Clark, and not only in the normal high-risk varieties.

“With higher temperatures forecast the disease is likely to increase further.”

In Norfolk and Cambridgeshire, independent crop consultants report the disease has been more common on Claire and Option than in the Crop Monitor trial sites.

Crop Monitor is a new, free service that uses live data from trial sites across the UK along with historical data to give growers an accurate picture of disease development in wheat and oilseed rape .

Funded by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and run by Central Science Laboratory, weekly updates are provided by ADAS pathologists and AICC agronomists.

The Crop Monitor website allows users to view data in graphs by region, variety, cultivar, leaf number or a combination of their choice.

The site also provides access to historical data from DEFRA-funded research and showcases new research developments.