Agrii Summer 2017 Contents New weather-based Septoria decision support system Page 1 News update from around the region + Focus on: U40s fruit growers Conference (report from Agrii’s Matt Greep) + Agrii apple juice: top of its class! + Lamb nutrition: think about trace elements + Event preview: Stow Longa Technology Centre summer events + Case study: Kent farm tackles biggest weed threat (and it’s not blackgrass) + OSR events across the region – focus on clubroot Page 2 Seed update + Bulk cleaning and colour sorting – see the results + New varieties: is there too much choice? Page 4 Nutrition: a liquid approach Page 5 Harper Adams Scholarships Page 5 Dates for your diary Page 6 Agrii Photography Competition 2017 Page 6 Regional contact information Page 6 www.agrii.co.uk @AgriiEast 01 A novelweather-based decisionsupportsystem developedoverthe pastthreeseasonsisshowing considerablepromiseinhelping Agriiagronomistsandtheir growersbettertailorfungicide programmestolocalSeptoria triticiriskforthegreatestcost- effectiveness. Thesystemusesmeteorological datafromournetworkof190farm- basedweatherstationsacross thecountryasanindicatorof likelydiseasepressure.Alongside cropspecificinformation suchasdrillingdate,varietal resistanceandpreviousfungicide applications,thisextra intelligencehelpsproductmixtures andratestobeadjustedinline withanticipatedSeptoriarisk throughoutthegrowingseason. “ThetwoverydifferentSeptoria seasonsof2014and2015provided uswithexcellentbenchmarksto relatelocaldiseasedevelopment torecordedweatherconditions,” explainsR&Dprojectsco- ordinator,DrFrancescaSalinari responsibleforthesystem. “Ourdetailedmonitoring showedlessrainydaysin2015 togetherwithlongerlatentperiods betweeninfectionanddisease appearance,leadingtolater symptomsandsloweroverall diseasedevelopmentthan2014. “Weemployedthese benchmarksandotherimportant weatherdatatoestimatelocal diseasepressuresandinform sprayingdecisionsoverthe2016 season.Atthesametime,weran aseriesofcarefullycontrolled trialsatourkeySeptoria managementsitestoassess theeffectivenessofarangeof differentsprayingregimes.” The2016trialsshowedtheAgrii systemwasprovidingvaluable additionalriskmanagement informationfordecisionmakers. AttheLenhamsiteinKent,for instance,thesystemsuggested highSeptoriapressurewaslikely atT1andatT2onthebasisof latentLeaf3and2infections. Andbyfarthehighestyieldsand marginscamefromhightrial fungicideinputregimesatthese timings.Indeed,atanaverageof around £370/ha,themarginover fungicidecostsfromthehighinput trialregimesatT1andT2was wellinexcessofthosetreatments involvinglowinputsateitheror bothtimings(seegraph). “Thepastseasonhasgiven usconfidenceinthevalueofour decisionsupportsystemforleaf emergence-drivenfungicide programmes,”DrSalinari commented.“Thiswasincontrast totheevent-basedforecasting modelswe’vebeenstudying inparallelwhichhaveproved unsuitedtotheUKtreatment approach. “Ofcourse,it’searlydays yet.We’recontinuingtotest andrefinethesystemwithour agronomistsacrossthecountry tohelpthemtailortheirspraying recommendationsasclosely aspossibletoanticipatedlocal diseaselevelsbeforethey becomeapparentinvisible symptoms”. New weather-based Septoria decision support system 2016 Fungicide Regime Performance in Lenham Trials “ Knowing the risk of latent infections present in the canopy and ready to sporulate, as well as the potential for newly established infections as each leaf emerges, promises to give us an important edge in ensuring the most cost-effective treatment programmes.” Dr Francesca Salinari, Agrii