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Very close up shot of wheat crop ears in field

Report: 09 May 2014 (for week beginning 05 May 2014)

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

9 May 2014: Winter wheat crops continue to develop at a rapid pace with many reporting that the flag leaf is visible to fully emerged in early sown crops. However, a turn in the weather is now delaying T2 fungicide applications which considering the amount of Septoria in the crops could be a potential problem. Fungicide supply shortages aren't helping in a high disease pressure year, but considering the amount of wheat in the ground and the number who chose to apply an SDHI at T1 perhaps it is not surprising there is a dearth of preferred product. Winter barley crops are looking well and ear emergence is imminent. Winter oilseed rape crops are moving out of flowering so thoughts will now turn to desiccation timing.

: Earliest Flag leaf (GS37) dates from previous crop reports, these are all from southern crops...
2014 - 02 May
2013 - 20 May
2012 - 17 May
2011 - 06 May
2010 - 21 May
2009 - 07 May
2008 - 09 May
2007 - 04 May
2006 - 08 May
2005 - 04 May

Seed weevil numbers dropping:

T2 fungicides started:

Septoria remains the main threat:

Fungicide shortages a concern:

Slugs active in wheat crops:

Wild oats emerging:

Ears emerging in winter barley:

Flag leaf fully out on forward wheat:

Winter Wheat

image from FoL

Septoria threatens (photo courtesy Farming Online).

South East: September and early October sown crops of Gallant, Solstice and Cordiale now have flag-leaf up to fully emerged on main shoots, with other varieties now at early GS37. Tramlines remain wet on lower lying fields following more rain recently ? combination of winds and rain look likely to disrupt timely T2 applications over the next week.

Septoria: most September/early October sown crops are carrying very high levels of Septoria on older leaves, with symptoms now present on tip leaf 4 in earlier sown crops.

Yellow Rust: some foci have recently appeared in November sown Solstice where T1 applications were delayed by around 10 days, otherwise none seen since T0.

Brown Rust: generally only low levels detectable now following earlier T0 and T1 fungicide applications.

Mildew: there has been a slight increase in the last two weeks as crops respond to applied nitrogen and canopies thicken up.

Eyespot: wet soil conditions and frequent rain events are increasing the frequency of stem based browning symptoms and clear eyespot lesions can be readily found on the more susceptible varieties (Cordiale, Solstice and Gallant) particularly on heavier soils.

Aphids: despite generally mild winter conditions no adults have been found to date. No signs of BYDV showing up yet either.

Eastern Counties: Flag leaf now tipping on most crops with between 10-40mm out of leaf sheath. No flag leaves 100% out yet but expect this within seven days on the most southerly wheat. Septoria is the main threat to the crops as there are a lot of active lesions bubbling away in the bottom of crops. Kielder looks the cleanest of the bunch, Santiago the dirtiest. Diego has some huge leaf 2s out which almost look like wild oats!

Septoria: pressure high where farmers did not use SDHI at T1.

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

Brown Rust: trace levels.

Mildew: trace levels.

Eyespot: not significant.

East Midlands: A few forward crops at early boot and flag leaf spray applied on 7th May ? earliest I have known. Most crops have flag leaf appearing with just a few late crops at GS 33-37. Fields travel well but continued showers causing things to slow down. Next five days almost non-spray days so hope for dry weather next week.

Septoria: hopefully sprays for flag leaf going on at about 3½ weeks after T1 but with lack of any SDHI fungicides around and now prolonged wet weather it may mean adding prothioconazole or epoxyconazole rather than SDHI if topping up needed due to delays.

Yellow Rust: now under control from T1 sprays.

Brown Rust: none seen.

Mildew: levels continue to be low.

Eyespot: levels remain under control but prolonged wet feet may cause some to re-emerge.

Weed control: Blackgrass ears now starting to emerge. Flushes of bindweed.

Slugs: shredding wheat after rape all the way up to final leaf emerged.

West Midlands: Pretty much all wheat crops have flag leaf anywhere from just poking through to three quarter out (the really forward stuff was sprayed on 6 May). Have perhaps around 5-8% of acreage which only has leaf 2 three quarter out with no flag leaves showing but these are all crops sown end of November and also mostly with seed from 2012. Most applying final split of nitrogen this week. The vast majority of wheat crops look to have really good potential (not as thin as 2011) but equally not too thick, Septoria control and the weather from now on will determine if the yield potential is met.

Septoria: seems to have pretty much stripped leaf 5 with varying amounts on leaf 4 dependent upon variety sowing date and altitude (somewhere between 5-30%) but so far leaf 3 seems ok.

Yellow Rust: no new infection seen.

Brown Rust: none seen.

Mildew: very little seen.

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

Weed control: more cleavers have emerged along with groundsel and volunteer oilseed rape.

North East: Forward crops have the flag leaf tip emerging and crops are growing fast. Field conditions are good and most applications are up to date.

Septoria: present in many crops.

Yellow Rust: controlled by T0 fungicides.

Brown Rust: none seen.

Mildew: none seen.

Eyespot: developing in a few crops, sharp eyespot seen as well.

Weed control: Polygonum weeds and still a few cranesbill emerging.

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

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Winter Oilseed Rape

image from FoL

Seed weevil numbers decreasing (photo from Farming Online),

South East: All crops now typically at late flowering, with only around 10% flowers left on main raceme of Alienor and Trinity.

Seed Weevil: levels beginning to decline again as crops move towards the end of flowering.

Light Leaf Spot: Sclerotinia sprays should have aided control on pods/upper canopy.

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

Eastern Counties: Many rape crops now going out of full flower with petals falling rapidly in current windy, dry conditions. Pod set looks good, we have had a predominantly dry time during flowering with only about about 5mm this week. Showery forecast ahead but light land rape crops will soon start to suffer after a prolonged dry time in the East.

Seed Weevil: in warm dry conditions seed weevils have been noted and treated where thresholds have been reached.

Light Leaf Spot: no recent infections.

Sclerotinia: some growers have opted not to apply a second fungicide during flowering as conditions have been dry. Some second applications were made last week a few this week on some of the later crops which still have a lot of flowers and petals to fall (mainly north Norfolk). It has been difficult to obtain preferred fungicides.

East Midlands: Crops at mid to late flowering with good pod set ? yield prospects look good if June weather is kind although doubt if dry weather would hinder rape crops now.

Seed Weevil: no reports of weevils being treated and few seen in crops ? front of sprayer when Sclerotinia sprays applied is usually best indicator and these have been clear.

Light Leaf Spot: levels remain low.

Sclerotinia: all crops sprayed now with some early sprayed crops having had their second Sclerotinia spray where some risk. With the frequent showers this could be money well spent as risk remains high.

West Midlands: crops are definitely on the turn so next time through the crop will be with a desiccant.

Seed Weevil: none seen.

Light Leaf Spot: trace levels in some crops.

Sclerotinia: may need to apply a second fungicide if flowering continues.

North East: Crops range from mid to late flowering and are looking well. Average temperature for week was 10.5ºC and 7.6mm rain.

Seed Weevil: none at thresholds.

Light Leaf Spot: under control now.

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

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Winter Barley

South East: Crops now generally at GS 39-55 with T2 fungicide spraying now underway over next seven days.

Eastern Counties: Ears emerging. T2 planned to go on this week. Crops are quite tall but growth regulators have been working and crops are bouncing back at me, which has to be a good sign.

West Midlands: crops suddenly popped the awns out over the weekend with 70%+ crops now in this state. No disease worth speaking of.

East Midlands: Awns now showing and T2 fungicides due to go on when weather allows. All crops look very well.

North East: Crops have moved quickly through growth stages with many crops now at awns visible. Disease levels remain low.

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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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