East: Weather now hinders spraying

Recent rainfall in East Anglia has been very welcome but continuing April showers and cold frosty nights are now hindering plans for spraying.

If T1 timing in wheat is delayed fungicide treatments are going to have to be bolstered to increase eradicant activity. Septoria and stem base diseases have got going in crops aided by regular leaf wetness. Yellow rust is also becoming active again although frosts will help to slow development. Leaf 3 is emerging in the more forward crops and most T1 fungicides if not already applied will be due in the next week assuming the weather allows!

Cereal crops are generally looking healthy with good yield potential providing we continue to get rainfall.  Many wheats are very well tillered and with recent uptake of nitrogen will need robust PGR treatments at T1. 

Oilseed rape has been very slow to develop having reached early stages of flowering some time ago. Again cold nights haven’t been conducive to further flowering and pod development which could result in an extended flowering period and greater exposure to sclerotinia.

Germination of sclerotia started early this year and although average temperatures at the moment are probably too low for infection to occur as temperatures improve and petals start to fall risk of sclerotinia will increase rapidly.

To cover the flowering period two fungicide sprays are planned with the first early flower treatment recently applied or will be in the next few days. This will then be followed by a second treatment no more than three weeks later to try to close out sclerotinia and protect against other flowering diseases.

Sugar beet has generally all emerged. Weed emergence in some fields has been slow in cooler soils but many crops are in need of their first post-emergence herbicide. At the moment we are delaying treatments due to frosts. The Broadacre approach is becoming more popular and helps to avoid these early risky situations on recently emerged beet.

Spring barley has established well this year. Insecticide treatments have been applied with higher aphid pressure and thrips on crops during early growth stages. Contact gramincides have either been applied or are due shortly and will then be followed up with T1 fungicides and broadleaved weed herbicides.

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