Know How / Pulses

In a tough pulses market, our page aims to help grow a more profitable crop in the face of rising inputs and volatile markets.

This is your starting point for addressing challenges such as disease and weed control, integrating different cultivation techniques, exploring precision farming and protecting the environment.

Key areas of focus:

  • Getting establishment right
  • Planning fungicide strategy
  • Keeping on top of weeds
  • Choosing the right varieties for the right market
  • Meeting market specifications

Case studies

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WEED MANAGEMENT

Organic grower turns to sheep to control weeds

Shropshire organic grower Mark Lea was concerned that docks might become a nuisance weed on his farm and, as he could not reach for a chemical can, he turned to…

BLACKGRASS

How a radical blackgrass strategy slashed seed return

Edward Vipond has made radical changes to his cropping system in his ruthless quest to reduce blackgrass numbers by slashing the seed return. The weed has become a real headache…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How grower targets fish food market and weeds with bean crop

Martin Lines has benefited from growing beans – not only because there is an increasing demand for home-grown protein crops, but also as it has helped him nearly stamp out…

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…

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…

PULSES

How to hit quality specs with marrowfat peas

Growing a profitable crop of marrowfat peas requires complete attention to detail, from seed-bed formation to harvest, as getting it wrong can lead to disappointing yields and loss of valuable…

Practical advice

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SOILS

How to raise headland yields by cutting soil compaction risk

Yields on field headlands are typically 10% lower than the rest of the field, which is why farmers will benefit from measures that minimise the impact of increased traffic on…

COVER CROPS

How a Dorset farmer grows cost-effective cover crops

Dorset grower John Martin, together with Kings Seeds, has designed his own cover crop mix, which provides the maximum benefit to his calcareous soils while also being cost-effective. He was…

WEED MANAGEMENT

Mechanical weeders: What are the options?

Mechanical weeders could be one way to manage weeds that are proving more difficult to tackle because of resistance and a dwindling number of actives. However, with several different models…

WEED MANAGEMENT

Rule reminder: Key pesticide stewardship guidelines

Plant protection product stewardship campaigns are now at the heart of industry efforts to prevent further losses of under-threat active ingredients. Here, we give a reminder of the key actives…

ESTABLISHMENT

Tips to improve pulse performance in a difficult season

Even the best bean grower would have struggled to achieve high yields last season in the worst combination of conditions possible for the crop, which saw yields 23.4% below the…

PULSES

Why prospects are looking up for peas and beans in 2019

Pulse growers are set to benefit from four useful additions to the Recommended List – two of which are spring beans that increase the performance of pigs and poultry when…

Insights

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CROP MANAGEMENT

How wet weather is affecting cropping plans and farm finances

One of the most difficult autumns in memory for arable farmers is causing widespread disruption to fieldwork and rotations, threatening to put a giant dent in 2020 crop performance and…

PULSES

Lift seed rates for winter beans drilled very late

Bean growers can still achieve reasonable crop yields when drilling winter varieties in the spring, providing they lift the seed rates. One of the wettest autumns for many years has…

HARVEST

Harvest verdict: Barley is the winner in mixed season

The 2019 harvest started in ideal dry conditions with winter barley growers reporting bumper crops coming off with good quality, some were even seeing yields well into double digits.    But…

MARKET OPPORTUNITIES

What to consider when choosing crops to drill this autumn

Wheat and oilseed rape are the winners in terms of gross margin, but both crops are coming under greater scrutiny, forcing growers to look at other options this autumn.  For…

MARKET OPPORTUNITIES

The new crops that could soon profit UK farmers

White and purple wheats, food barleys, special types of beans, oats for health drinks and even chickpeas are some of the novel crop options being investigated by Agrii. Farmers can…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

Slow sulphur could help growers save on fertiliser bills

A slow-release sulphur fertiliser will be available this autumn which may help growers to save money by cutting back on applications, with Britain’s number one blender being one of the…

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

How US farmers are tackling pollution in the Gulf of Mexico

Nutrient run-off from agricultural land is being blamed for the vast oceanic dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico and farmers have responded by adopting measures more commonly seen in…

NUTRITION AND FERTILISER

Why phosphate fertiliser use on crops may have to change

Current best-practice strategies for phosphate fertiliser use in arable crops are based on feeding the soil to feed the crop, rather than the crop. As a result, the guidance in…

CROP SELECTION

The best spring cropping options for your farm

Arable growers are set to switch further into spring cropping to tackle blackgrass, cut input costs and make the most of niche markets, and spring barley is often seen as…

SOILS

Expert advice on managing soils better

Soil health has risen to the top of the agenda for the agricultural industry over recent years. At the recent Farmers Weekly Soils in Practice event on a Lincolnshire farm,…

Video

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CROP MANAGEMENT

Video: How to properly set up a crop sprayer

Crop spraying is one of the most important and highly skilled jobs undertaken on any arable farm, but it is facing increased public scrutiny. This is why it is vital…

ARABLE

Video: Ultimate guide to good slug pellet application

With the fate of metaldehyde in their hands, growers have one final winter to make sure the slug killer doesn’t contaminate watercourses. As a timely reminder, Oli Hill looks at best application…

ARABLE

Video: Grower cuts fuel costs as new drill hits blackgrass

The need to slash soaring fuel costs while tackling blackgrass at the same time has led to a wholesale change in establishment system on one Leicestershire estate. Farming 1,130ha of…

ARABLE

Video: How to calibrate your slug pellet spreader

Slug pellets and the potential harm they can cause to watercourses is under intensifying scrutiny. Making sure pellet spreaders are properly set up will be vital to avoid breaching the…