East: OSR desiccation needs careful planning

Oilseed rape desiccation timing is approaching. The majority of crops will be treated with glyphosate, although with increased levels of lodging this year, there will be an increase in diquat use. This is because glyphosate does not translocate well if the stem is kinked. If a basic glyphosate is to be used with an additional adjuvant, care must be taken to avoid an illegal dose rate or application. Read all product labels very carefully.

Pod sealant products are likely to be in big demand, if the challenging weather continues they could be a wise investment.  Check the pod sealant label for timing details to achieve the best results.  

Grain aphid numbers are being monitored in cereal crops. Although the levels of aphids are significantly higher than the last few years, very few crops are likely to breach a threshold of 66% of tillers infested (post GS 61). Brown rust is apparent in some wheat crops, and may need treatment.  

With some sugar beet crops still not meeting in the rows, further herbicide treatments may be required. If that is the case, it will be well worth checking these do not breach the active ingredient limits.

Tissue analysis have been taken on crops that are lacking vigour, the recent heavy rainfalls have put many nutrients out of reach of the roots. Foliar nutrient applications may help, or in the more severe cases granular applications may be required. Before further applications are made check that these are still within the fertilizer manual guidelines.

Potato crops are requiring robust blight programs – quality systemic products at 7 -10 day intervals are essential. Slug control will also be of paramount importance this year. I am favouring ferric phosphate based products, as the labels are far less restrictive.

Before harvest it will be well worth updating part 4, table D in the soil protection review books. Most farmers will have several entries here (access to water logged land), and careful thought is needed to rectify the problems.

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