Maize needs more hot weather

COLD WEATHER has set maize back by two weeks, but imminent hot weather should promote growth and allow crops to catch up, while whole-crop cereals may need fungicide treatment.

Yellowing maize crops can be treated with manganese to promote green growth, says Maize Growers Association agronomist Simon Draper.

But this is cosmetic and sunshine should achieve the same result. “Weeds have been equally slow growing, but lots have germinated. With maize growers not using atrazine, we have seen rising numbers of small nettle.

This is quite difficult to control, with variable results.”Mr Draper recommends fluroxypyr or spraying with Syngenta’s new product Calisto (mesotrione). Should soils stay cold, some crops may need a top dressing of nitrogen, as cold soils have failed to mineralise the nutrient, he adds.

He also reminds whole-crop growers that cereals destined for dry types of whole-crop need an ear fungicide applying in the next week to avoid fusarium trouble in forage.

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