Our Farm: Rainfall pushes crops on but raises disease prospects

Over the past month, it’s been pretty cold down here at the company farm and, thankfully, over the past two to three weeks, we’ve had quite a bit of much needed rainfall.

As a result of that, the spring barleys have come through the ground really well. Some of the more cloddy seedbeds that were sown after the cover crops struggled initially with the dry weather but, now we’ve had the rainfall, they’ve come through nicely.

So they’re just starting to even up and hopefully won’t look back now.

The oil seed rape is now in full flower. The slightly warmer weather and the higher level of moisture that we’ve had has increased the gleratinia risk, so we’ve got a spray due on that.

The change in weather has also increased the disease risk in our winter crops. So just be aware of this, particularly in the wheat, as the timing between T1 and T0 may have been stretched and, as a result, the timings might be interrupted between T1 and T2.

So there’ll be some careful consideration around fungicide choice and appropriate rates.

The same applies for PGR programmes. These may have been interrupted at T1 due to the weather – they certainly were here – and although things are looking well, we might have to address this at T2 as well.

Our fields of winter barley had struggled initially due to the lack of rainfall in April, but now they’re racing away and they’re nice and green.

The flag leaves are out and awns just starting to peep through on most of them. The ears will be out in no time if we have some sunshine and a bit of warmth, which will do them the world of good.

All in all, it’s been a very positive start to the spring here and here’s hoping that continues!

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