Rain

Rain

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 13°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Newmarket: OSR growers seek ways to cope with ban on neonicotinoids

06:00 28 June 2014

CAT Technical Director Richard Fenwick reports on the winter wheat trials

CAT Technical Director Richard Fenwick reports on the winter wheat trials

Archant

Farmers looking at ways of coping with a ban on seeds treated with neonicotinoids, a type of insecticide, were given advice on how to grow oilseed rape (OSR) next season at an agricultural event near Newmarket.

shares
Dr Richard Jennaway, right, Technical Director of Saaten Union, at company's Rosalie field station where CAT trials take place, discussing new OSR varieties.Dr Richard Jennaway, right, Technical Director of Saaten Union, at company's Rosalie field station where CAT trials take place, discussing new OSR varieties.

Cambridge Arable Technologies (CAT) Open Day, which took place earlier this month, looked at strategies for coping with the removal of seed treatments for OSR as well as the most promising new wheat varieties and how to grow them in this area.

CAT, launched in 2005 to provide membership-based trials for East Anglian farmers, tests out crops at a site at Cowlinge, south of Newmarket.

Richard Jennaway, manager of the Rosalie field station at Cowlinge, said there were some interesting new OSR varieties but the main concern for growers is the ban on neonicotinoid seed treatments such as Cruiser.

“All of the OSR in the trials was treated with Cruiser and farmers are going to have to think very hard about crop establishment if they cannot use these products this autumn,” he said.

Dr Richard Jennaway, Technical Director of Saaten Union, at company's Rosalie field station where CAT trials take place, discussing new OSR varieties.Dr Richard Jennaway, Technical Director of Saaten Union, at company's Rosalie field station where CAT trials take place, discussing new OSR varieties.

“Oilseed rape is very vulnerable up to three to four weeks and the cabbage stem flea beetle is most active in September when the soil is warm. Therefore don’t drill too early and pay close attention to seedbed preparation. This does not mean going back to the plough but consider drilling depth carefully and aim to drill when rain is imminent.

“Growers will also need to spray three or four times during the autumn. Among the challenges are cabbage root fly, which we control at present but which could build up and become a greater problem. We will all need to be vigilant.”

Farmers at the annual event agreed fungicide treatment of wheat crops has paid off this season, as they inspected untreated trial plots of popular and upcoming varieties suffering from a range of common diseases.

In contrast, plots of the same varieties treated with a standard ‘on-farm’ spray regime were effectively ‘clean’, even when challenged with a virulent new race of brown rust that has taken hold in the untreated plots through mid June.

CAT technical director Richard Fenwick said: “KWS Trinity is looking attractive at this stage in the CAT trials but lacks the orange blossom midge resistance of Skyfall. This may not be a problem for many growers and it is possible to control this insect with sprays, but it is obviously best not to have to do so.”

In addition to its extensive variety trials programme, CAT is undertaking work designed to test the full potential of modern wheat. With a widespread suspicion among farmers that recommended nitrogen levels are not sufficient to maximize yields in the best modern varieties, including hybrids, CAT has developed a trials regime in which selected varieties receive between 0 and 400 kg N/ha, applied at three growth stages. CAT members will have access to the results after harvest.

Other crop nutrition work includes an examination of ‘little and often’ sulphur treatments and trials with recently introduced, commercial ‘nitrogen enhancing’ products. These products claim to boost soil fertility or to help the plant make better use of available nitrogen, such as by using organic ‘nitrogen fixing’ microbes.

shares
Bury Magistrates' Court

If the Ministry of Justice has its way, Suffolk will end up with only one magistrates’ court, based in Ipswich.

Felixstowe seafront.

Changes are being made to rubbish collection services in Felixstowe after seafront bins were left unemptied and overflowing.

South East Suffolk Magistrates Court

A woman attempted to steal goods worth £18 from an Ipswich store because staff allegedly mocked her when she got stuck in the lift, a court heard.

Homes have been refused on land at the Haven Exchange site in Felixstowe.

Proposals for 61 homes near the Port of Felixstowe have been refused by an independent inspector because it would mean the “unjustified loss” of employment land.

An artist's impression of Suffolk Coastal's new HQ at the old Girdlestones site at Station Road, Melton.

Concern has been voiced over the impact on businesses in Woodbridge when Suffolk Coastal vacates its site to move to new offices.

Bridge campaigners Peter and Mary Curry and Jane Welsh with Braintree MP James Cleverly. Picture: Hywel Barrett

The cost of closing Finchingfield Bridge could be counted in bodies, says the village’s GP surgery.

Charles Notcutt and The Queen at the Chelsea Flower Show 2002

A leading horticulturalist and businessman, whose name became synonymous with a Suffolk town, will be remembered with a service of thanksgiving in September.

Henry Birt, with Director Ben Emerson, is retiring from Roland Plastics after many years service.

Woodbridge man Henry Birt is hanging up his coat and finally retiring - for the second time - after 41 years of working for Roland Plastics.

Craig Wilkinson visits the Custom Cars and Hot Rods rally on the promenade at Felixstowe.

Throbbing engines, vibrant colours and cars with their own character and style brought thousands of people to Felixstowe seafront for one of the resort’s most popular annual events.

Colchester Borough Council leader Paul Smith, Leisure World manager Paul Youngman, business development officer Jake Neale, Welcome Zone assistant Peter Slovák and personal trainer Debbie Gee are encouraging sport.

Leisure centres in Colchester are encouraging a healthy lifestyle by joining in with a National Fitness Day on September 9.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages