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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PLOUGHING AND CULTIVATION

Why wheat is £10/t cheaper to produce with no-till approach

No-till farmers produce wheat for £10/t less than their conventional counterparts, according to a benchmarking exercise of 12 farms in East Anglia. Accountancy expert Gary Markham says that the combination…

PLOUGHING AND CULTIVATION

Direct drilling is within reach for one organic grower

Oxfordshire grower James Alexander hopes to increase yields while drastically cutting his diesel bill by switching to direct drilling across his 323ha of organic cropping. The direct drilling advocate already…

PLOUGHING AND CULTIVATION

Why strip-till is key to one farmer's cultivations approach

Strip tillage offers farmers the best of both worlds – a tilled strip offering a good tilth moist, friable, well-draining seed-bed along with some of the benefits of zero tillage. Louise…

ESTABLISHMENT

Direct drilling brings long-term rewards in Wiltshire

No cultivations have been carried out for the past three-and-a-half years at a Wiltshire farming business, since the decision was taken by the father-and-son team of George and Patric Hosier…

CROP MANAGEMENT

How one farmer is helping his crops cope with stress

Whether it’s the drought last spring or the deluge this time round, crops are increasingly facing spells of extreme weather, which can severely hit yields. Very dry periods or monsoon-like…

ARABLE

Spring beans outperform oilseed rape on heavy Essex land

Spring beans are a better break crop than oilseed rape on heavy Essex clay land for grower Christy Willett after she harvested to top yield of 6t/ha last summer with…

Practical advice

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SOILS

Tips on assessing the health of your soil

A healthy soil is described as a living system that helps to maintain and enhance the natural environment, which in turn makes for more productive crops. That’s a shortened version…

SOILS

Advice on reducing soil erosion in arable fields

Soil erosion is a natural process that can be slow and continue virtually unnoticed or may occur at an alarming rate and involve huge amounts of soil being lost from…

PULSES

Top winter bean grower shares his establishment tips

Lincolnshire grower Victor Barker consistently achieves high yields for his winter bean crops by ensuring he achieves high-quality seed-beds to enable good establishment. Farming 160ha on the fens at Dowsby,…

SOILS

5 expert tips for maximising soil health

Good soil health is vital for achieving high yields and improving your soils doesn’t have to be a difficult task, says one Australian soil health expert. Simple measures like adding…

BLACKGRASS

Expert advice on using rotations to tackle blackgrass hotspots

Severe blackgrass infestations are costly for farmers, resulting in large reductions in yield, as well as adding £100/ha or more to herbicide costs. The good news is that a combination…

CROP SELECTION

What to consider when choosing next year's winter crops

Farmers are being advised to consider crops that will set them up for the next few years, rather than just focussing on those giving the highest returns in the coming…

Insights

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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,…

ARABLE

How 'conservation agriculture' can improve soil health

Adopting the fundamental principles of “conservation agriculture” has huge potential for nursing depleted arable soils back to health and correct implementation is key to its success. Conservation agriculture is defined…

ARABLE

Video: Heavy duty drone can cope with changeable UK weather

Farmers are forever being told that in the not-so-distant future drones will become a common crop monitoring tool, but what good is this technology if it cannot withstand the unique…

ARABLE

Arable Horizons: What climate change means for farming

Climate change and agriculture are intrinsically linked – food production is the biggest contributor to global warming and suffers the most from its effects. This was the focus of the final Arable…

VARIETY SELECTION

How winter cropping gross margins stack up for 2017/18

Harvest is underway in some parts of the country, but for most there are still a few weeks to go before the really busy season begins. Now is an opportune time…

ARABLE

Arable Horizons: Biocontrol - will holy grail be reality?

The use of sophisticated biological pest control methods in glasshouses has been a huge success story, helping growers of high-value crops reduce or even eliminate the use of chemical pesticides.…

Video

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CROP MANAGEMENT

Video: How 3 farmers spruced up their spray stores

Having the right spray store set-up will help growers stay on the right side of the law, keep valuable spray stocks safe from criminals and save spray operators a significant…

COVER CROPS

Video: No-till wins over grower to direct-drilling

New to no-till grower Richard Boldan is driving forward his plans to convert to a reduced cultivation system for a more sustainable future, with ambitions to grow more spring crops and establish…

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: 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…