Growers reminded of pesticide rules for wheat drilled from today

Growers are being reminded that any winter crops drilled from today onwards (1 February) are classed as spring crops in terms of herbicide label rules.

Because of the wet winter, many growers throughout the UK still have winter wheat seed in the shed.

And now that conditions have finally started to improve, growers are rushing to get as much of this into the ground as quickly as possible.

See also: Spring wheat growers gain extra grassweed herbicide option

However, Jonny Oosthuizen, herbicides product manager for Adama UK, points out that the Health and Safety Executive’s Chemical Regulations Division defines any crops sown on 1 February, or after this date in the year of harvest, as spring crops.

This is irrespective of the variety being drilled. Consequently, farmers must comply with the relevant crop protection regulations.

Some farmers might be unaware that any crop protection products registered only for use on winter wheat can’t be used on crops sown after 31 January, even if the seed is technically a winter variety, Jonny says.

“Instead, these crops can only be treated with products labelled as being approved for spring-sown crops.”

He adds that this changing of the seasons narrows the crop protection options available to control fresh flushes of weeds.

“Some herbicides aren’t permitted for use on spring wheat, even if the actives themselves may be used via other products,” Jonny says.

There is a risk that farmers who haven’t traditionally grown spring wheat before could fall foul of the rules.

For example, straight pendimethalin is approved for use on spring barley, although it is no longer approved for use on wheat drilled from 1 February.

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