At this time of year the weather changes very quickly and so do the ground conditions. Opportunities for spraying have diminished rapidly but then we did have a fantastic spell earlier!
Seedbeds have been ideal and coupled with good soil temperatures cereal crops have made a good start with the bonus of very little slug damage. If an autumn herbicide hasn’t been applied to wheat there are now products such as Othello that will control larger annual meadow grass when applied in the spring.
Some early sown winter barley is going rather yellow especially on headlands. Crops will have used up any available soil nitrogen and where roots have come across unfavourable soil conditions the results are clear for all to see.
Oilseed rape has continued to make reasonable growth and those sown in mid September will generally go into winter with sufficient top growth but more importantly they have decent roots.
It’s always worth walking oilseed rape fields at this time of autumnand digging up plants to see whether your cultivations have beensuccessful at enabling the root to develop deep and straight andshowing no obvious compacted layers which show as sharply branchedroots. There are still some rape crops yet to recieve their autumnlight leaf spot fungicide.
Those established without ploughing may well carry more readily soan opportunity to get on may stll arrive. Soil temperatures havedropped to a level where Propyzamide products can now be applied ifgrassweed control has not been done earlier. Remember OSR serves as anexcellent crop in which to tackle brome or blackgrass infestations.