East: Leaving out insecticide proves to be the right call

Oilseed rape crops on light land are rapidly approaching the correct stage for glyphosate application. Those on better bodied soils are hanging on and will probably be at the right stage for desiccation in five to seven days time depending on the whether.

I try and go as late as I can as we’ve found this keeps the oil content up.

While examining crops it’s been evident that there is very little sclerotinia infection. I’m looking out for signs verticillium wilt which looks like being the next big disease problem to hit the crop.

There is very little damage from seed weevil or bladder pod midge, which makes it very gratifying that the right decision was made not to include an insecticide with the mid-flowering spray.

Winter barley harvest is not far off, but nobody seems to be gettingtoo excited about it due to total lack of interest from the market.

Secondwheats are beginning to show classic take-all symptoms. Even thoughcrops lost tillers during the spring drought they appear to havecompensated by producing more grain sites per ear. Whether this will beexpressed in yield has yet to be seen.

Crops that went intopoorly structured soils are also starting to exhibit all the foot rootproblems, which will only be detrimental to yield.

Very few blossom midge larvae can be found in the ears, again confirming that it was the right decision not to spray.

Aphidnumbers are increasing in untreated crops, but most are past thevulnerable stage. Only late-drilled and spring crops need treating.

Driedpea crops have really appreciated the dry whether; let’s hope it staysdry for their harvest. They’ve received their second fungicide,insecticide for pea moth and aphids, plus manganese.

Springbeans look extremely respectable, and like the peas have been treatedwith a second fungicide for downy mildew and a triazole for protectionagainst brown rust.

Sugar beet, growing rapidly in the pastthree weeks, is meeting in the row. But it’s worrying to see the amountof bolters appearing – even in low bolting varieties.

The cropwill receive its first fungicide for protection against foliar diseasesin the next 10 days. Black aphids can be found but not in great numbers.

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