Know How / Oilseed rape / Crop management

Once it’s up and away, oilseed rape needs careful management and the right nutrition throughout the growing season to ensure it fulfills its potential. See what can be done to maximise output, put a lid on growing costs and keep the crop photosynthesising as it reaches maturity and fills its seeds.

Case studies

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WEED MANAGEMENT

7 steps to tackling a ryegrass problem

In the space of 10 years, one Essex farmer has improved a ryegrass problem, which had resulted in fields of wheat being cut for silage, to a situation where this…

SOILS

How to identify and encourage worms to improve soils

Earthworms are a key measure of soil health, as they can mobilise locked-up minerals, help drainage and spread organic matter to improve soil structure. Therefore, we travelled to one of…

OILSEED RAPE

How top oilseed rape growers achieve high yields

Two leading Scottish Borders oilseed rape growers’ focus on crop establishment and nutrition has led them to push their average farm yields towards the 5t/ha barrier. David Fuller manages 650ha…

BLACKGRASS

How Oxfordshire farmer cleaned up a bad blackgrass problem

Piers Cowling manages 1,170ha of variable soils in a renowned blackgrass hot spot, and six years ago he realised that radical changes were necessary if he was to continue growing…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How benchmarking costs is helping one arable manager

Accurate, up-to-date costings are helping Herefordshire farm manager Mark Wood make the right decisions to drive forward the 1,200ha arable and beef farm that he manages. A former AHDB monitor…

ARABLE

How a new entrant became an arable manager

David McLaughlan hasn’t taken the traditional route on his way to a management role at Bartlow Estate in Cambridgeshire, as he has no farming background or formal qualification in agriculture.…

Practical advice

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WEED MANAGEMENT

Bur chervil becoming an increasing problem this spring

The broad-leaved weed bur chervil is becoming an increasing problem across the country, and must be targeted early this spring if good control is to be achieved. Independent agronomist Antony…

DISEASE MANAGEMENT

Why OSR flowering sprays should be based on disease risk

Applying fungicides at the right time is critical for effective sclerotinia control, and that's why growers need to keep an eye on disease alerts as their crops approach flowering. Weekly updates are…

CROP MANAGEMENT

6 areas to improve sprayer operator efficiency

In order to hit crucial spray timings and ensure inputs work as effectively as possible, spray operators need to maximise their time spent in the field on good spraying days.…

OILSEED RAPE

Four critical months to minimise OSR yield losses

Oilseed rape yields can vary by more than 1t/ha between seasons and researchers have identified ways that farmers can manage their crops to minimise seasonal effects. While the yield trend…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How a former RAF pilot is improving crop management

A recent tie-up that brings together agronomy and aviation expertise will provide growers with highly accurate and cost-effective aerial imagery to improve on-farm decision making. The use of aerial imagery…

CROP MANAGEMENT

Pesticide changes for potatoes and Avadex in spring wheat

Pesticide labels frequently change and keeping track is essential to stay on the right side of the law. Adam Clarke highlights two key changes that growers should be aware of…

Insights

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OILSEED RAPE

Defoliation reduces flea beetle larvae numbers by 61%

An on-farm trial of defoliation methods in West Sussex has reduced cabbage stem flea beetle larvae numbers by up to 61% this spring. Larvae numbers in grower Paul Helyer’s oilseed…

VARIETY SELECTION

What the new TuYV-resistant varieties mean for OSR yields

Two new varieties on the Recommended List this year offer growers the opportunity to protect their crops from the turnip yellows virus while also achieving top yields. When the first…

VARIETY SELECTION

How Clearfield varieties can tackle erucic acid in OSR

Rapeseed exceeding erucic acid limits continues to be a problem for crushers, resulting in farmers facing deductions or even rejections of loads. Erucic acid is a naturally occurring fatty acid…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

How N-fixing breakthrough will slash fertiliser use

A specific strain of nitrogen-fixing bacteria, isolated from sugar cane in Brazil and capable of colonising plant roots, is being developed into a technology that could reduce the farming industry’s…

TECHNOLOGY

How French spraying tech can slash herbicide spend by 80%

French kit maker Kuhn is moving into high-tech solutions such as spot-spraying, offering farmers dramatically increased application accuracy and decreased production costs. It is in response to more established competitors bringing…

CROP MANAGEMENT

Trial aims to identify most valuable technology for growers

A farm-scale trial of technology could provide data to help justify payments for environmental measures taken on farm in the future, while also improving the quality of advice given by…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

A round-up of enhanced urea fertilisers and additives

Enhanced urea fertilisers and urease additives could soon have a greater role on arable farms as the government looks to slash ammonia losses through its Clean Air Strategy. The UK…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How farmers can help prevent 'mass extinction' of pollinators

Arable farming needs to change in order to halt declines in biodiversity and prevent one of the worst mass extinction events in history, a leading US entomologist has warned. Bold…

ARABLE

5 ways new tech can improve pesticide applications

With pressure on plant protection products from regulators and the growing problem of resistant weeds, pests and diseases, it is increasingly important to use them as accurately and effectively as…

ARABLE

7 essential arable farming apps

Whether it's looking up the nitrogen requirements for wheat on chalk or helping with the safe use of drones, there is a constant pipeline of smartphone apps promising to make…

ARABLE

Data reveals how raising crop yields can offset subsidy loss

Any reductions in support payments arising from Brexit can be covered on most UK arable farms by improved crop performance, results from ProCam’s 4Cast service suggest. The higher wheat yields…

BLACKGRASS

How an Australian approach could beat blackgrass

A unique research and knowledge transfer initiative is helping Australian grain producers tackle their most damaging agronomic threat – herbicide-resistant weeds. In the UK, each major agrochemical and distribution group…

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