Agrii East Spring 2016 Contents Developing an integrated approach to Septoria management Page 1 iFarm event previews Page 2 Seed Options for the Spring Page 3 Early spring barley nutrition makes all the difference Page 3 Black-grass-driven agronomy delivers in Lincolnshire Page 4 A new world wheat record for the UK Page 5 Best of British Farming Study Award Page 6 Enquiry Contact Numbers Page 6 www.agrii.co.uk agriiUK 01 T horoughly integrated management employing an extended armoury of agronomic tools alongside the best available chemistry has become every bit as essential in cost-effective wheat Septoria control as it is in tackling the scourge of blackgrass believes Agrii head of RD David Langton. Gone are the days when simple epoxiconazole and chlorothalonil programmes would deal with Septoria tritici as effectively as Atlantis once controlled blackgrass. The disease is far more difficult to manage these days with a growing range of strains showing far less susceptibility to even the most powerful azole fungicides. Thankfully with multi- site protectants and SDHIs alongside azoles we can still achieve good Septoria control. However weve reached the stage where we can no longer count on the level of fungicide kick-back we used to. So rather than eradicating infection most of our focus has to be on preventing them taking hold in the first place. Recognising this necessity in recent years Agriis wheat disease research programme has been increasingly focused on integrated Septoria management strategies incorporating a broad range of agronomic tools including varietal resistance drilling date and crop nutrition as well as fungicide timing stacking and sequencing. Screening more than 2000 lines with all the main breeders at our high Septoria pressure iFarm in South Wales in the biggest programme of its kind in the country is identifying valuable sources of very much better resistance for UK development explained David. This is making a big contribution to increasing the number of varieties coming forward with Septoria tritici resistance ratings of 7.0 or more. Alongside it Coordinated Growing System COGS trials at our research sites across the country testing emerging new varieties to destruction well before their arrival on the Recommended List is providing growers with the most reliable local variety- specific agronomy advice. Our recent research has also given Master Seeds the confidence to commercialise varieties like Solace offering particular advantages for high Septoria risk regions despite not being included on the RL. Two years of trials at our AgriiFocus Technology Centre in Wiltshire have shown the crucial importance of variety selection and drilling date in Septoria management added Agrii western region trials manager Dr Syed Shah. Even with a well- timed T0 Septoria pressures in 2014 were so great that the disease proved almost impossible to control on all but the most resistant varieties sown in mid-September. In contrast untreated plots showed a dramatic reduction in infection levels across all varieties from late October sowing. Good Septoria control proved possible here on varieties like KWS Santiago with a poor resistance rating of 5. Disease pressures were less last season but we still saw responses of 2tha to the best fungicide programmes from Crusoe sown early and well over 1tha from later sowing. This underlines the extent to which the right choice of variety and drilling date can take the pressure off chemistry stressed Dr Shah. Developing an integrated approach to Septoria management Journal Agrii East Spring 2016 iFarm Event Previews 02 8th March 2016 Stow Longa Technology Centre iFarm Event 9th March 2016 Thoresway iFarm Event 6th April 2016 Leadenham iFarm Event Our iFarms offer farmers the opportunity to experience the very latest RD and allows us to join up agri-science with practical agronomy enabling our customers to constantly improve yields grow profitable crops and respond to The Food Challenge. For more information on any of these events please speak to your Agrii Agronomist alternatively you can contact Charlie Lewis on 07789 942493 or email charlie.lewisagrii.co.uk DATES FOR YOUR DIARY T his year the Stow Longa spring iFarm event will be held on Tuesday 8th March. There will be two sessions available one in the morning and one in the afternoon with lunch for all attendees sandwiched in-between. The meeting will consist of a series of discussions out in the field with the team that have been working on the Stow Longa blackgrass site for over 15 years. Steve Corbett Agrii Trials Manager will discuss cover crops and the teams experiences to date on heavy land in a blackgrass situation. This will be followed by cultivation strategies drilling dates and the use of cover crops across rotation choices and their impact on blackgrass levels with Colin Lloyd Agrii Head of Agronomy. The meeting will then finish with discussions from David Felce Agrii Regional Technical Advisor who will talk about Nutrition programmes across winter wheat and spring wheat drilled late autumn plus spring wheat drilled in March which is a new piece of work for Stow Longa in 201516. The event will be held outdoors and will be at the mercy of the British weather so please come equipped with wellies and waterproof clothing. If you would like to attend please speak to your Agrii agronomist. Stow Longa Spring Agronomy Discussions Bring your wellies This year the spring iFarm meeting for the Thoresway site in Lincolnshire will be held on 9th March 2016 at The Blacksmith Arms close by to the iFarm site itself. The years meeting will cover a wide range of topics with Agriis specialists making the meeting not one to miss. Subjects will include coping without Neonicotinoid seed treatments from David Leaper Agrii Seed Technical Manager and reducing fungicide resistance with the correct programme and varieties with Steve Corbett Stow Longa Trials Manager. After a short coffee break the meeting will continue with talks on managing market volatility and keeping values in perspective with David Neale Head of Crop Marketing managing in-crop variation with Stuart Alexander SoilQuest Commercial Manager and then conclude with discussions on soil nutrients and how they interact in modern farming with Ian Robertson Sustainable Soil Management. We very much hope you can join us. If you would like to attend then please get in touch with your local Agrii agronomist. Thoresway iFarm Spring Agronomy Workshop A big thank you to everyone who filled in the questionnaires that we sent out with the last edition of this journal. We were pleased to find out that the majority of people who sent us their feedback do read the journal However many of you did say that you do just read selected articles or skim-read it therefore well try to keep the information that we include timely and relevant and try to include more articles focusing on the topics that you identified as being most important. Crop protection seed and variety choice and nutrition came out top and youll find articles on all of these topics in this edition. Weve also tried to refresh the look of this issue and increase the font size a bit too. We appreciate comments good or bad at any time so please do send any further feedback to us at infoagrii.co.uk Feedback results Seed and Nutrition 03 W ith the new Recommended Lists having been recently announced there will no doubt be a fair number of unfamiliar spring barley variety names being talked about in the press. For English malting barley growers it will most probably come down to a choice of whether to stick to the familiar in the shape of Propino which is still the No.1 choice for maltsters or whether to move to one of the higher yielding newer varieties. RGT Planet will draw much of the headlines it sits at the top of the list for yield and this year commercial stocks are available. However at the time of writing contracts are limited as maltsters have in some cases still to run test malts from this harvest. Nonetheless it already has the support of the French market and it is expected to gain support in Germany and the UK. Not far behind in yield performance is KWS Irina. A limited number of contracts have been available this year for export to the continent. At the moment UK maltsters have not added it to the list of varieties that they want. Varieties such as Odyssey Concerto and one or two other malting varieties may also have local buy-backs available. Growers should take the time before sowing to see what options are available and if growing without a buy-back it is best to stick to varieties with a wide market appeal like Propino. Spring wheat seems a simple choice for many in that Mulika accounts for nearly 60 of the market and as a NABIM Group 1 variety it should produce the best gross output. Most human consumption pea contracts have been and gone and blue pea buy-backs may only be available on an open price basis due to end users having plenty of stocks available. It is important to choose a variety with good colour retention to maximise the chance of a full premium. Daytona has an excellent reputation for colour retention which is key to achieving the maximum gross margin. The spring bean crop is unlikely to be less than last year good samples will get the best premiums and the rest should find homes in the feed market. There is little to choose between varieties Vertigo Fanfare and Fuego all have their supporters. Seed Options for the Spring E arly nutrition can make all the difference to spring malting barley performance. This is especially important as spring conditions often prove to be challenging in the first few weeks after drilling when the crops potential is being set. Given that the growing season is so short and barley yield is so dependent on effective early tiller production and survival nutrition is crucial. Trials across our network of arable technology centres and iFarms have underlined the particular value of early phosphate sulphur and key micronutrients alongside nitrogen for spring barley. Enhanced availability of phosphate with a standard N dressing in the seedbed for instance increased mid-March sown Propino root and shoot growth markedly to deliver an extra 0.75 tha of grain at one site. At another site sulphur applied in the seedbed raised yields by nearly 0.25 tha with similar yield increases secured in parallel trials from either manganese seed treatment or manganese-coated seedbed fertiliser. Weve also seen zinc-coated seedbed fertiliser giving a 0.42 tha yield boost to Concerto. And the same variety profited from copper-coated seedbed fertiliser to the tune of 0.23 tha. Agrii has the ability to treat fertilisers with Wolftrax micronutrients matched to soil and crop requirements. These and other results from our trials network underline the extent to which spring barley can profit from the best attention to balanced early nutrition. The right application at the right time can be highly cost-effective. Our work shows around half the total N application should be in the seedbed with the balance applied by GS13 for the greatest results. Our work also suggests a useful performance not to mention cost advantage for using Origin Enhanced Nitrogen combined with P-Reserve treated Phosphorus. As every little really helps with early spring barley nutrition we also recommend having the seedbed phosphate-coated with P-Reserve to combat phosphate lock-up and increasing P levels in the soil solution. Trials have given us noticeable increases over ordinary phosphate products in tissue phosphorus levels and the use of P-Reserve increased root and shoot development at GS30 for an extra 0.13 tha yield at harvest. Alongside phosphate and sulphur its well worth addressing any specific micro- nutrient imbalances in the seedbed too. For which reliable soil analyses that include assessments of Cation Exchange Capacity CEC and organic matter as well as pH to indicate the likely availability of key nutrients in addition to their levels are essential. All-in-all our extensive research clearly demonstrates the value of assessing the soil nutrient status of spring barley ground carefully ahead of planting and addressing any imbalances through seed or seedbed treatment wherever possible to prevent any compromise to crucial early crop growth and development. Early spring barley nutrition makes all the difference Varieties such as Odyssey Concerto and one or two other malting varieties may also have local buy-backs available. Alongside phosphate and sulphur its well worth addressing any specific micro-nutrient imbalances in the seedbed too. Agronomy research and advice helps in a determined battle against black-grass Serious black-grass concerns across land brought back in hand in recent years have prompted major changes to the 1220 ha arable business at Revesby Estate on the southern edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds as farm manager Peter Cartwright and his team have brought all their available cultural as well as chemical weapons to bear on the problem. At 10.32 tha across the 500 ha of first and second winter wheats grown last season a farm yield fully 1 tha above the historic average suggests their fully integrated rotation-wide approach is starting to pay dividends. But Peter sees it as very much a work-in-progress with the real proof of the pudding a 10tha-plus farm average over at least three years. And he and his Agrii agronomist Richard Butler are keen to build on their experience to date. Fully Integrated Action Overall Peter and Richard reckon bad black-grass has been costing Revesby Farms a good 2tha in wheat output not to mention 50-100ha in extra seed and chemical costs. Their determined effort to counter this major drain on profitability has meant changing from a mainly min-till based wheatwheatrape regime to an extended rotation involving a sizeable area of spring wheat rotational ploughing delayed winter wheat drilling with competitive varieties at increased seed rates and robust pre-planting and pre-emergence herbicide treatment. Wheat land with bad black-grass is now automatically ploughed in the autumn set up over winter and put down to a spring crop. In addition to the sugar beet traditionally grown on the estate and both vining peas and potatoes contracted to local groups 135 ha of spring wheat were harvested last season. As well as giving time for Roundup control ahead of sowing the team have found this especially competitive and financially rewarding. It suits them far better than spring barley and importantly avoids any volunteer barley problems in the rotation. Keeping up the Pressure Having ploughed the worst of the seed burden down this means we need to apply plenty of pressure on seed remaining in the germination zone while keeping the buried seed down there for the five years or so our Stow Longa trials are showing to be necessary.. So after the one ploughing we revert to minimum tillage using a combination of the estates Spalding Flatlift and or Terrano MT ahead of the Vaderstad Rapid cultivator drill to deal with what had become significant compaction problems and give sufficient seedbed cultivation without moving black-grass in the profile. At the same time were attacking the weed seed remaining in the upper soil layer with a robust combination of rotational cultural and chemical controls. All October Drilling We dont start drilling even our first wheats on low black-grass pressure ground until October 1st these days explained Peter. That way we make the most of every stubble weed control opportunity even in a September as dry as the past one. Our 8m Vaderstad Rapid gives us the capacity we need even with such a large acreage to sow. Were also choosing competitive varieties and employing higher seed rates. Free-tillering Relay has been valuable on the worst infested fields to date although we may need to revisit this on the basis of the latest Stow Longa research. At the same time were drilling fully 450 seedsm2 on the bad black-grass fields compared to 350 seeds m2 on the cleanest ones. Were keeping up sowing rates on our medium black-grass pressure fields too as the last thing we want to do is let the black-grass get away. While were not using such a robust pre-em weve still gone in with a combination of flufenacet DFF and prosulfocarb. And of course were continuing to make the most of every stale seedbed opportunity we can. Customer Case Study 04 Black-grass-driven agronomy delivers in Lincolnshire Case Study The Wiggins-Davies familys Revesby Estate near Horncastle Drilling at Revesby Farms Peter Cartwright R and Richard Butler inspect stubble for black-grass KEYS TO SUCCESS Field-by-field agronomy driven by black-grass status. Maximum initial assault on bad problems only easing as they are overcome. All bad black-grass ground ploughed and put into spring wheat. Min-tilling resumed thereafter to avoid bringing viable weed seed back to the surface. Robust rotational cultural and chemical controls against weed seed in the germination zone. Maximum stale seedbed control ahead of every crop every season. Competitive wheat varieties sown at higher seed rates with no drilling before October. 05 Journal Agrii East Spring 2016 Wheat World Record at Beal Farm J ames Rod and Vicky Smith and their Agrii team at Beal Farm overlooking Holy Island have set a new world wheat record with a 16.52 tha crop of Dickens grown for Master Seeds. The new world wheat record confirmed by the Guinness Book of Records following detailed independent verification and video recording is all the more impressive for being produced to the farms strictly commercial seed crop growing regime. It shades the 16.50 tha grown by Tim Lamyman in Lincolnshire which is not being put forward for official recognition and smashes current title holder Mike Solaris 15.64 tha New Zealand record. For a total input cost of under 46t the crop generated a gross margin of over 1000ha at a feed wheat price of 110t to underline its financial value as part of the Agrii Best of British Wheat 15t Challenge. And this before accounting for the extra returns from a seed crop and the timely use of Agrii marketing tools. Rod Smith who only beat his father James long-standing 4.7 tacre 11.6tha farm wheat average record last season puts this years Dickens achievement down to a combination of variety and season with fantastic agronomy and farm teamwork. We drilled the Dickens after beans in the third week of last September which is later than we like for seed crops in our heavy ground. But we got an excellent seedbed from two discings and a cultipress and with enough moisture it established really well and evenly. In the past theres always been something in every season to get in the way of performance dryness waterlogging disease excessive temperatures or lack of sunlight. But last season we had no serious crop stresses at all. This allowed us to push performance from a well-established crop with just the right level and timing of inputs. There was more than enough early yellow rust and Septoria around in the area to be thankful we used a fluquinconazole seed treatment at T-1 pointed out agronomist Andrew Wallace working alongside the familys long-standing Agrii adviser Eric Horsburgh. Our programme of four main fungicide sprays including SDHIs at T1 and T2 coupled with generally low disease pressures meant we kept plenty of green leaf throughout the season to support the average 820 earsm2 and 36 grainsear we recorded in July. Aiming for 17tha at 11 protein we applied 310 kgha of N in four splits to balance total N-Mins of 140 kgha and complemented it with a robust little and often PGR programme from T0. An autumn dose of Nutriphyte PGA to promote rooting ensured the most efficient nutrient uptake he continued. This enabled us to apply the extra foliar manganese copper zinc boron and magnesium the crop needed strictly on the basis of tissue analyses ahead of each spray timing. As well as the tremendous yield the value of this prescriptive nutrition was clear in a bushel weight of fully 82 kghl. Alongside variety and season Rod Smith has no doubt that the success is down to dedication of the entire Beal team. Working closely with their agronomists he stresses that Alan Fairbairn Stuart Ord and Stephen Pringle are invaluable in coaxing the very most out of unforgiving soils with heavy machinery in fields in which the ditches cant run at high tide. Over the years weve developed a cropping system that suits our ground and conditions well concluded Rod Smith. Weve found producing quality Master Seeds crops with integrated Agrii agronomy invaluable in helping us maximise wheat performance and profitability. But we certainly wont be resting on our laurels. We can see plenty of room for further improvement and are keen to continuing pushing our performance to the greatest commercial effect in the years to come. Northumberland team set new world wheat record with Master Seeds crop of Dickens The crop generated a gross margin of over 1000ha at a feed wheat price of 110t World Wheat Record Dickens Crop Summary 330 seedsm2 185 kgha with fluquinconazole at T-1 sown on September 22 300 kgha each of TSP and MOP after variable PK to even-up soil indices Post-em AMG and broad-leaf herbicide insecticide Nutriphyte PGA 310 kgha total N plus balancing S on top of 140 kgha available N from the soil Four nitrogen fertiliser splits two of stabilised urea Four main fungicide sprays including SDHIs at T1 T2 Little and often four spray PGR programme from T0 Foliar Mn Cu Zn B and Mg strictly to tissue analyses 820 earsm2 and 36 grainsear in July 16.52 tha dry yield at 82 kghl specific weight. 06 Journal Agrii East Spring 2016 Study awards and contact details Enquiry Contact Numbers Agronomy Enquiries Customer Services 0845 607 3322 Agrii Consultancy Services Paul Pickford paul.pickfordagrii.co.uk 07909 925413 Fertiliser Enquiries Peter Read 07836 387 686 Tom Land 07730 764 043 Stuart Menhinick 07770 334 141 SoilQuest Stuart Alexander stuart.alexanderagrii.co.uk 07889 413 190 Seed Support and Variety Sales Information Kevin Woodman Simon Hobbs 07768 507 204 07770 643 365 Angie Baker Ross Dawson 07796 193 895 07912 043 305 Sam Gallagher Richard Lawrence 01522 515 204 07836 567210 Louise Rawlinson Paul Taylor 07721 788943 07525 234309 Farm Saved Seed Mark Taylor mark.s.tayloragrii.co.uk 07836 527 251 Hugh Boswell hugh.boswellagrii.co.uk 07740 926 119 Fruit Crops Kevin Workman kevin.workmanagrii.co.uk 07802 981 080 Vegetable Crops Chris Wallwork chris.wallworkagrii.co.uk 07885 252 455 Weather Stations Neil Obbard neil.obbardagrii.co.uk 07885 252 418 Event Enquiries Charlie Lewis charlie.lewisagrii.co.uk 07789 942493 Crop Marketing Paul Taylor paul.tayloragrii.co.uk 07525 234309 W e were so inspired by Jimmy Rod and Vicky Smithsworld wheat yield record this summer that wevedecided to offer five people the chance to further theirknowledge and make a difference to British farming. Agrii is offering five Best of BritishFarming study awards for peoplewho want to make their mark onBritish agriculture.Each will award 1500 towardsassisting your studies or career plans. WHO CAN APPLY Five Best Of British Farming Study Awards will be presented in summer 2016. You can apply if you meet the following criteria Either A registered student with one of the following Harper Adams University Riseholme College Bishop Burton College Scotlands Rural College SRUC Or Working full time on a UK farm The award can be used towards a course of study or project that furthers your own knowledge and development through a topic of value to British farming. HOW TO APPLY You can apply for an Agrii Study Bursary between11th January 2016 and 30th April 2016. TO ENTER YOU WILL NEED TO 1. Visit www.agrii.co.uk and download the application form. 2. Complete the personal details and answer the six questions about Beal Farms record breaking wheat yield. 3. Write around 1000 words about how you would use the Study Award. Or alternatively you can submit a simple 2 minute video with your answers. 4. Submit your application by email or post before the deadline of 30th April 2016. WORLD RECORD BREAKING INSPIRATION The Smith familys 16.52tha achievement from a Master Seeds crop of Dickens shows just what is possible when British Farming innovative agronomy and the best agri-intelligence combine. Make your mark on British Farming with an Agrii Study Award APPLY NOW Applications are now open until 30th April 2016 just go to www.agrii.co.uk for more information and to start your application.