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Very close up shot of wheat crop ears in field

Report: 25 April 2014 (for week beginning 21 April 2014)

Report compiled by Farming Online from reports received from members of the Association of Independent Crop Consultants

25 April 2014: Winter wheat continues its march to an early flag leaf appearance. Many crops have final leaf three fully emerged with the tip of final leaf two visible and fungicides are going on as weather conditions allow. Septoria remains the main threat particularly as heavy rain showers are forecast. Winter oilseed rape is at mid-flowering for most and reports suggest that a lot of crops have been treated for Sclerotinia already. Seed weevil numbers are building in southern crops. Winter barley disease levels remain low as crops move towards flag leaf and awn emergence.

Seed weevil numbers building in South:

T1 fungicides now:

Sclerotinia - threat increases:

Yellow rust levels diminished:

Wild oats emerging:

Flag leaf in winter barley:

Flag leaf on forward wheat:

Seed weevil: Larvae feeding in the pods can damage up to a quarter of the developing seeds and where a high percentage of pods have been affected this can equate to an overall yield loss of 5 - 10 %, however additional yield losses may result from Brassica pod midge which can exploit feeding damage and egg laying scars to deposit their eggs. ADAS thresholds are 0.5 weevils / plant in northern Britain and 1 weevil / plant elsewhere.

: Bayer Pest Spotter

Winter Wheat

image from FoL

Septoria threatens

South East: Crop growth continues to develop steadily, with September and early October sown crops of Gallant, Solstice, and Cordiale now having leaf 2 50-75% emerged on main shoots, with flag-leaf up to 25% emerged in some early sown crops of Gallant. Claire, Scout, Leeds and Diego are still around 10 days behind, with leaf 3 around 1/3 to 2/3 emerged. Some wet tramlines again following 30mm of rain at beginning of the week, otherwise generally good travelling conditions.

Brown rust: generally only low levels detectable at present.

Yellow rust: no active disease.

Mildew: slight increase this week as crops respond to applied N and canopies thicken up

Septoria: recent rain splash events now mean that Septoria will be actively moving between leaf layers, placing fungicide strategies under close scrutiny.

Eyespot: stem based browning symptoms and clear eyespot lesions can be readily found now on more susceptible varieties (Cordiale, Solstice and Gallant), particularly on heavier soils.

Weed Control: some surviving patches of blackgrass in a few areas that will be sprayed-off once it is clearly visible.

Eastern Counties: Crops range from GS 32/33 for most. T1 fungicides now applied to most crops which went on in good conditions. There are some really leggy crops around - up to my knees already. These will get a PGR at T2. Recent rain has pushed crops on a lot. Many crops showing Manganese deficiency which is being corrected now. Final N going on this week. I think there is some good potential out there this year so I am pushing the fertiliser to the top tier on farms and chasing yield.

Yellow rust: only found where a T0 did not go on.

Brown rust: trace levels.

Mildew: trace levels.

Eyespot: not significant.

Septoria: rain will be increasing risk of high a Septoria pressure year. There is more rain forecast next week so Septoria will become active again.

Weed Control: Herbicide has worked really well on most fields and smoked the blackgrass and wild oats.

East Midlands: Forward crops at leaf 3 emerged and remaining crops at leaf 3 emerging to late GS 31. Generally crops look well with a lot of potential. Unsettled conditions have slowed spraying but all forward crops sprayed before weather changed and some spray occasions during drier periods.

Yellow rust: levels remain low.

Brown rust: none seen.

Septoria: upper leaves 3-5 remain clean after T0. However, lower older over wintered leaves have plenty although many lower leaves have died off in drier weather.

Mildew: levels continue to be low and T1 going on to clean leaves.

Eyespot: remaining generally low with a few crops requiring treatment but many stems clean.

Weed Control: a bit of Wild Oat mopping up with T1 sprays - also flushes of mayweed being a nuisance in a small number of fields but easily controllable.

West Midlands: Some Grafton with flag leaf poking out. All but the very late drilled wheat has leaf 3 at 30-100% out. Late sown wheat with leaf 4 just about out so these will be treated Friday 2nd/Monday 5th May. As long as the weather behaves itself all remaining T1 should go on by Monday 28th. Starting to be asked when final split of nitrogen can go on, hoping to keep them off until end of next week/week beginning 5th May especially on crops where the flag leaf is emerging if we stand any chance of keeping them upright!

Yellow rust: no new infection seen .

Brown rust: none seen.

Septoria: all crops carrying high levels. Some heavy rain of late will have spread this through the canopy.

Mildew: very little seen..

Eyespot: huge range of incidence ranging from only a few percent up to 35% of tillers.

Weed Control: Herbicide doing a really good job on bromes and even on ryegrass.

North East: Crops range between GS 30-32 with most at GS31. The most forward crops with leaf three out have been treated with a T1 fungicide

Yellow rust: controlled by T0 fungicides.

Brown rust: none seen.

Mildew: none seen.

Septoria: present in many crops.

Eyespot: developing in a few crops.

Take-all: confirmed from lab test, on crop seed treated for take-all. This is an early sighting.

Weed Control: Polygonum weeds, charlock, Wild Oats and other spring weeds starting to emerge.

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Winter Oilseed Rape

image from FoL

Seed weevil numbers increasing.

South East: All crops now typically at mid to late flowering, with only about 25% flower left on main raceme of Alienor and Trinity now.

Pollen beetle: low levels only.

Seed Weevil: beginning to find increasing numbers of adults in many crops now.

Sclerotinia: all crops should have had early to mid-flowering spray applied before Easter with follow-up applications scheduled for 14-21 days later.

Eastern Counties: Most crops in full flower, the applications of metconazole seem to have helped to level and even up crops well which were rather uneven a couple of weeks ago. Just a few backward badly pigeon damaged crops still struggling to come into flower but they are branching and producing buds.

Light Leaf Spot: no recent infections.

Seed Weevil: difficult to find.

Sclerotinia: most crops have received first flowering fungicide application. A few still due this week, these crops were later coming into flower and with others the 3 week interval from the previous spray is only just being reached.

Weed Control: Blackgrass control has been a struggle in areas even with a programmed approach. There has been some patch spraying with glyphosate on areas of dense infestation in places.

East Midlands: Crops at mid flowering with 20 plus pods on many crops and all look well with some potential.

Light Leaf Spot: levels remain low.

Sclerotinia: sprays went on before weather broke and so all covered - early applied ones with at risk crops will get a second spray after 3 weeks.

Seed Weevil: numbers remain low but still time to build up.

West Midlands: most crops well podded up and looks to be a good 50% through flowering. Crops are definitely shorter than normal, could be because more semi dwarfs or the big dose of fungicide on all but the semi dwarfs back in March.

Seed Weevil: none seen.

Light Leaf Spot: trace levels in some crops.

Sclerotinia: all crops sprayed for sclerotinia last week with the last crop completed Easter Monday, hope they finish flowering soon.

North East: Crops range from GS 4.1 to 4.6 10% to 60% buds open. Average temp for week 8.8 degrees with 1.6 mm rain for week, crops are coming into flower rapidly.

Seed Weevil: none at thresholds.

Light Leaf Spot: under control now.

Phoma: traces levels.

Sclerotinia: control sprays main focus as there is a high risk of petal stick expected at the end of this week with wet forecast.

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Winter Barley

South East: Crops now generally at GS37-49 - any late PGR applications need completing urgently before ears begin emerging. Thoughts now turning to T2 sprays aimed at when awns visible - likely to be from 7-10 days time.

Eastern Counties: Awns soon to emerge. Some broad leaved weeds now reaching out the top of the canopy.

West Midlands: Flag leaf emerging, to out on fertile land/early sown crops, with just the odd awn starting to show, get the T2 on next week probably.

East Midlands: Crops at GS 32-33 and expect to see flag leaf towards end of month in some crops.

North East: Flag leaf emerging. Low levels of mildew, Net-blotch and Rhynchosporium. Brown rust in Cassia.

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Crop Report compiled by Farming Online from reports received from members of the Association of Independent Crop Consultants.

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