South: Windy conditions flatten crop hopes

Many winter wheat crops look promising after recentshowery weather. Until the rain arrived some were looking stressedwith flag leaves starting to curl.Most have had a full fungicide programme applied in goodconditions which has kept septoria levels down on the lower leavesand produced clean flag leaves.

Orange blossom midge numbers were monitored, but thresholds werereached in only a small number of cases for treatment with Dursban(chlorpyrifos).

Mildew has remained at low levels but can readily be found inClaire.

Yellow rust has arisen only in untreated areas or where timingshave been stretched, particularly in Robigus. Brown rust has beenabsent, but the risk will increase if the weather becomes hot anddry.

Most winter barleys received good two-spray fungicide treatmentsand disease has been kept under control.

A bigger problem has been growth regulation, and with the recentthundery windy conditions we’re already seeing pancake flat cropswhich is of huge economic concern.

The small proportion of oilseed rape crops unaffected bypigeons, rabbits or slugs have finished flowering and poddedwell.

While many very poor crops were re-drilled with a spring crop, afew were left that were borderline; these have recovered to somedegree and are still flowering.

Spring beans look very good, although downy mildew levels havebeen high and needed controlling with Folio ((chlorothalonil +metalaxyl-M).

Flowering is coming to an end and crops are podding nicely.

As many are grown for human consumption bruchid beetle controlhas been a high priority, many crops receiving Hallmark Zeon(lambda-cyhalothrin) during flowering.

Spring barley has been popular and disease has been wellcontrolled

Linseed has also been popular, but with fewer products availablecontrolling weeds has been difficult, and dry conditions atapplication have made mayweed control variable.

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