Wheats look well in north-east Scotland, says new Farmer Focus writer Ron Duncan. He is the first of the new wave of contributors joining our team of arable correspondents. GM crops, MAFF mistakes and patching oilseed rape are just some of the topics tackled this week. Turn to page 72-73 for more.
Claire can cope with septoria
DO not be alarmed by septoria showing on winter wheat Claire, says NIABs Duncan Connabeer.
Up to first node stage (GS31) the variety can seem hard hit by the disease, he says. "It can seem every bit as bad as on Consort and Riband.
"But do not panic. For the past three years we have seen quite bad septoria in the bottom of Claire. But once the crop gets to that stage a switch seems to kick in and the plants become resistant."
That means that unless mildew is a problem, which is rare on the chalks of his south and south-western region, growers with several varieties can safely leave Claire until the end of their T1 fungicide programmes, he advises.
Ron Granger for Claire breeder Nickerson agrees. "It is all to do with seedling and adult susceptibility," he says. "Mildew is the disease to watch out for on it at this stage." *