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Tillage Update April 23rd

23 April 2020
Type Media Article

Get the latest advice on spring & winter cereals; disease control & plant growth regulator programmes; nitrogen for feed & malting barley. Checkout our Podcast and latest videos

This weeks Tillage edge podcast is on aphid control in spring cereals. Our latest videos are on  PGR programmes in winter oats, identification of leaf 3 in winter wheat & weed control in spring cereals.

Over the past number of weeks spring cereals have been emerging very well with excellent establishment due to favourable seedbed conditions.  In addition the fine weather has allowed good progress on planting of beet, maize and potatoes and at this stage many crops have been planted. Rainfall amounts in April to date have been well below normal and soil moisture deficits (SMD’s) are on the increase.  Currently across the country SMD’s are ranging from 15mm in the south to 40mm in the north east.   With increasing SMD’s growth will be restricted due to limited soil water availability.  Rainfall will be welcomed especially for crops sown in the last 10 days and where herbicide residual activity is required plus crops that have to receive final N top dressings.

Winter Cereals

Winter wheat will soon require its 1stmain fungicide when leaf 3 emerges fully.  It’s very important to get this timing correct or the subsequent fungicides can be mistimed increasing disease threat and lowering yield.  See the video above from Michael Hennessy on identifying leaf 3 in winter wheat crops  Yellow rust is present in varieties such as Bennington, JB Diego and Torp so keep an eye out when walking crops. Winter barley crops are moving through growth stages rapidly and are quite short for this time of year but remember when the crop is only at half its final height when the flag leaf is emerging. There are reports of flag leaves peeping on crops in the south of the country so PGR’s will be needed in the coming week on these crops.  Winter oats crops are also growing well and crops have good colour.  Crops are ranging from GS 30 to 32 and will require a PGR to prevent crop lodging for further information watch short video on Oats & PGR’s 

Disease control

There are reports of yellow rust in Bennington, JB Diego and Graham winter wheat so include a suitable fungicide e.g. strobulurin +/- a triazole to if the rust is moving in the crop.  Walk crops and check disease levels, although most are generally clean, and apply a robust Leaf 3 (T1) fungicide when final leaf 3 is fully emerged.  Including an SDHI + Triazole plus Chlorothalonil at this timing. Disease levels in winter barley are low overall however watch out for rhyncho in Cassia.  There are reports of brown rust mainly in six rows but overall levels are low. Crops received their 1st fungicide in the last week or so therefore two fungicide application strategy will suffice as the gap to the final timing, at awn emergence, will be sufficiently covered.  Crops should receive a PGR in the next 7-10 days so this may present an opportunity to apply Chlorothalonil in advance of the final fungicide especially if ramularia is expected.  

Spring Barley

Spring barley is emerging very well and crops range from the 1 leaf stage to the start of tillering.  Nitrogen top dressing has been completed on most crops.  Watch for rain and complete N top dressing on crops sown in the 10 days.  Early sown crops are getting close to the 3 to 4 leaf stage and will require a weed control and in most cases an aphidicide for BYDV control as crops are in the moderate risk category for BYDV infection.

Check soil test results and apply trace elements where required.  There are reports of manganese (Mn) deficiency in some early sown spring barley crops, probably exacerbated by the dry conditions, so include a foliar Mn product at this early stage. Assess crops and identify main weeds present and select a suitable herbicide programme for further information watch video below where Ciaran Collins discusses weed control in spring cereals.