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Tillage Update 8th April 2021

Ciaran Collins, Teagasc Crops Specialist brings us this week's Tillage update on spring planting across the country for various crops. Ciaran also has fertiliser, pest and disease advice and tips for the winter cereals; Winter Barley and Winter Oilseed rape here

Spring planting

The recent dry spell of weather has enabled farmers to make good progress with the planting of spring crops in most parts of the country. Beans, wheat, oats and the majority of barley is planted. The weather was not as favourable in Donegal where a good deal of spring barley remains to be sown. Seedbeds have been excellent and rolling is essential to preserve moisture and help alleviate trace element deficiencies.

Thoughts will turn to fodder beet soon but planting fodder beet too early can increase the risk of bolters. Soil temperature are still too low for maize and sheltered sites under plastic should planted first.

Winter cereals

Winter barley is generally at GS 31-32 with a small proportion of early developing Joyau at GS 33+. The final nitrogen should be applied now. The recent dry weather has helped to slow the progress of disease particularly rhyncho that was evident a few weeks ago. Disease control is now a priority where nothing has been applied and will typically be prothioazole (Proline) based in combination with a strob (Modem/Amistar) or an SDHI. Most high lodging risk crops have received their first plant growth regulator. Caution is advised with tank mixes in the current cold weather.

The main nitrogen split (50% of total) is due on wheat as it approaches GS 31. Yellow rust has been common in susceptible varieties. Yellow rust can be very damaging and it is very important to walk crops to establish if it present rather than prophylactic use of fungicides. Septoria control will start later in the month when leaf three is fully emerged.     

Winter oilseed rape crops vary in growth stage depending on the severity of pigeon grazing earlier in the spring. The most advanced crops are in full flower at the moment and should have received their final nitrogen. High risk crops for sclerotinia will need a fungicide (Filian/Amistar) at petal fall but dry weather reduces the risk of the disease.

Teagasc held the first in a series of Crop Agronomy Webinars this week looking at crops through the season. Presented by Ciaran Collins, the webinar Question and Answer sessions are worth a listen, as there is a lot of useful information to help with your agronomy decisions in the weeks ahead. Check out the latest TillageEdge podcast on the topic here 

For more episodes and information from the Tillage Edge podcast go to: www.teagasc.ie/thetillageedge

For more Agronomy information check out https://www.teagasc.ie/tillagemonth/