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Report: 09 October 2009 (for week beginning 05 October 2009)

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

Winter barley: early sown barley roars away.

Winged aphids: in some early sown wheat and barley.

Blackgrass: doesn't know it should be dormant.

Winter Oilseed Rape: first signs of Phoma in the Midlands.


Winter Oilseed Rape
  • Most advanced crops at 10 leaf stage.
  • Cabbage leaf miner evident in may crops.
  • Slug damage very low.
  • Phoma -- first signs in Midlands.
Winter Wheat
  • Early sown crops at GS 21.
  • Slug damage low.
  • Aphids in some crops.
Winter Barley
  • Sown but little emerged.
Cross compliance
  • Make sure that 2m headlands are maintained where necessary.
Soil temperature
  • 11 degrees C and falling.

Winter Oilseed Rape

image from FoL

First signs of Phoma in the
Photo Farming Online.

South East: Crops range from 2 true leaves - 6+ true leaves - bulk of crops are now around 4-5 true leaves. Recent rain means crops now looking much healthier and more vigorous as they get hold of nitrogen properly, so would anticipate rapid growth in next few weeks.

Phoma: none seen.

Flea beetle: shot holing of leaves quite widespread even though most crops seed treated - possibly due to dry seedbeds.

Turnip sawfly: no larvae seen as yet.

Blackgrass: significant flush in a few fields with history of blackgrass or where there was poor control in previous cereal, with emergence coinciding with crop emergence. In general though, emergence to date has been minimal in many fields.

South West: Crops very forward this year with some at 9 true leaf stage. About 15% of crops have already received a fungicide as a growth regulator, we haven't been in this situation for nearly four years.

Phoma: none seen.

Leaf miner: widespread but not of concern.

Turnip sawfly: no larvae seen as yet.

Blackgrass: significant flush of blackgrass and herbicide already applied to many fields.

Eastern Counties: Crops range from 2 leaf to 10 leaf stage with the majority at 6 leaf stage.

Phoma: none seen.

Turnip sawfly: caterpillars present on some headlands, reduced activity due to cooler temperatures and pupation.

Weed control: now applied pre/early post-emergence herbicide to all fields.

East Midlands: All emerged and range from 2-6 leaves. Varieties: 55% Castille; 20% Flash and Cabernet; 8% Vision; 6% Krypton; + HEAR (Hearty and Maplas).

Slugs: on the whole very low.

Leaf miners: some damage but at low levels.

Phoma: first signs.

West Midlands: All crops now drilled with earliest crops now at 8 true leaf but lots of crops still at cotyledon stage.

Phoma: first signs.

Slugs: early sown crops now beyond having any problems with slugs, slug damage on some fields where no pellets applied.

Leaf miners: evident in some crops and worryingly on late sown smaller plants.

Weed control: Pre ems have worked surprisingly well but finding that once again there has not been enough moisture to control cranesbill.

North East: Virtually all crops have established regardless of method of drilling, and despite the dry conditions. Growth stages vary from 1 true leaf to 7 leaves. There are still a few areas within crops where seed will germinate now that we have had some rain.

Phoma: none seen.

Leaf miners: infestation of leaf miners seen in North Yorkshire the most common is the Cabbage Leaf Miner.

Blackgrass: infestations seem less dense than normal but some are at GS13+.

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Winter Wheat

South East: Peter Cowlrick reports that 95% of first wheat drilling has now been completed with exception of few fields of Xi19 and Soissons. 50% of second wheats also now been drilled. Emergence of crops sown 14-21 days ago is very variable with at best only around 80% of sown seeds emerged on better seedbeds and in some cases as little as 10% where seedbeds had dried out significantly. Around 30mm rain this week has transformed dusty seedbeds into ideal growing mediums - with warm and now moist soils emergence and growth from now on should be rapid. Seeds that had been sat in dry soils for most part appear to be germinating normally.

Slugs: high risk to fields after oilseed rape now soil is damp. However where seedbeds are fine and firm then hoping to avoid any pellet use at all this year.

Blackgrass: useful flush in some stale seedbeds, otherwise generally very little has appeared pre-sowing this year probably due to combination of good control in previous seasons or delayed germination due to dry soils.

South West: Stephen Harrison reports that crops are coming out of the ground in good order and range from 1 leaf to early tillering. Some wishing that they had delayed drilling as conditions much better after recent rains, clods falling apart easily now they have some moisture.

Slugs: some activity in cloddy areas.

Blackgrass: hasn't heard that it is supposed to be dormant this year.

East Midlands: Malcolm Harrison reports emergence delayed by lack of rain - little emergence during last week - a few spindly plants only at this stage. Varieties: 33% Solstice; 15% Humber; 8% Alchemy, Cordiale, JB Diego, Robigus; 6% Scout, Oakley; smaller areas of Einstein, Duxford, Gallant, Scout, Viscount and Claire. 10-16mm rain Tuesday. Anticipate rapid emergence of previously dormant seeds.

Slugs: no damage at all. None seen and cultivation in dry conditions will have had good control.

Weed control: pre-ems going on in anticipation of rain at some point soon.

West Midlands: Bryce Rham reports that most forward crops now at early tillering. 80% of wheat in, some second wheat and wheat after potatoes, maize and beans to drill. 21mm rain on Tuesday night has resolved all moisture issues with all unchitted seed now sat in moist soil, conditions now ideal for continued spraying.

Aphids: visible on quite a few crops.

Slugs: some damage to crops on heavier parts of fields where emergence is slow and evidence of dead slugs where pellets applied.

Weed control: volunteer oilseed rape emerged through early herbicides.

Eastern Counties: Brendan Butterworth reports that crops range from dry seed to early tillering. 80% of first wheats have been drilled and also some second wheats. But patchy emergence. Cobbly seedbeds where ploughed, some seedbeds fine and level. 14mm of rain from the start of the week has only penetrated the first inch and half of soil at present - some seeds still in dry soil.

Mildew: a few pustules on Claire at growth stage 1.3.

Slugs: low activity due to dry conditions especially where land has been ploughed.

Gout fly: eggs seen on wheat plants with 2 leaves.

Blackgrass: at 1-2 leaf in early-drilled crops that have not been sprayed. Majority of blackgrass treatments are being applied peri-emergence due lack of drilling depth and soil cover. Glyphosate on weeds in stubbles taking a long while to die due to dry conditions.

North East: Phillip Tuplin reports earliest sown crops emerging and have areas of fields at GS 11-12, and areas where no germination started yet. Recorded first rainfall (on 6th Oct) since 5th September. So far had 3 mm, but a further 12 mm. is forecast overnight. This is enough to activate the pre-emergence herbicides applied earlier and should get deep enough into most seedbeds to promote further germination.

Slugs: no activity seen so far, but as soon as seedbeds are soaked through will apply pellets to wheat after rape.

Weed control: despite the dry conditions pre-emergence herbicide mixes have been applied in anticipation of some rain. The emergence of crops over some areas has already justified this decision.

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Winter Barley

Overall: Sown but little emerged.

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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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