July 3, 2020
Agrii Scope: June 30th 2020
Welcome to the latest note and indeed the last one until we get into harvest when I can start reporting trials results from across the UK.
Usually the notes run from harvest to late autumn, but because of the situation this spring where we couldn’t walk you through the various work, I started again at the end of March and this is the 9th edition. It has been very useful from the R&D point of view to give you a flavour of what has been going on and thank you for the great feedback.
Please do have a look at the summer virtual tours now online as there is a huge amount of information from sites right across the Nation and specialist areas covered include soil solutions, rotations choices, crop marketing, resilience against resistance and sustainable productivity.
Glebe farm, Leadenham (Roy Ward farms) is a strong focus for work as an ifarm, but also for replicated trials for the Lincolnshire region. Many thanks to Andrew Ward and the farm staff for all their help yet again this season.
Andrew talks about the farm in general and this season in particular to introduce us to the site.
Local agronomist Fred Fowler talks us through the wheat variety trial and the spring barley work including agronomy programmes, filmed on 19th June.
Friday Bridge, Cambridgeshire
A very fertile site near Wisbech is featured here on the 19th June by Colin Patrick who explains how we really put winter wheat and winter barley varieties through a tough test to see how their lodging performance compares. A combination of great soil, seed rates, early nutrition and pgr programmes are used here to great effect and the data is used in the relevant Agrii advisory lists.
Agriifocus – Wiltshire
One of several sites to host our chickpea trials this year and the growth is looking really good. The plots are clearly enjoying the summer heat and doing well in dry conditions. So, progress is being made with a spring drilled protein crop which could offer a viable alternative going forward.
Appleton Roebuck, York
First featured in these notes on 7th April, the R&D team return to continue with assessments.
The original winter barley and wheat trial was another casualty of the poor autumn, here at North Hall Farm, Appleton Roebuck, York. However, this is a most useful site now drilled with spring barley, oats and triticale varieties, looking at seed rates and seed treatments to investigate the cultural control of Ryegrass.
These are overlaid across three different establishment systems and differences are already striking.
The plan is to continue with this work in the autumn and vary the cultivation techniques to give an ongoing sequence of cultural control, but this time hopefully reverting to the original plan of drilling winter wheat and barley varieties!
Kent ifarm site 2020-21
Neil Harper is planning ahead and has a very nice-looking site for the cereal variety and agronomy work down in Kent for next season.
Currently in to a very strong and even crop of peas, so should be ideal for some great trials in 2021 where we all look forward to taking local growers through the work, just like we used to do!
South Wales iFarm, Bridgend
A very interesting piece of work where Steve Corbett talks us through some ideas around inter row seeding in a maize crop.
We have seen similar work in these notes with Chris Taylor in Raglan, but here Lemken have very much got involved with a prototype drill system using either press rollers or tines on the same drill to see which produces the best establishment.
Plus, there are three different mixes being used to look at grazing, but also soil stability and reduced nutrition loss.
This should produce some very interesting results…
Finally, we are of course always looking for talented youngsters to join Agrii and define the future of our business. An example here is Alice, my 11-month-old Granddaughter who appears very interested in grassweed issues and before you say it, yes, she most probably makes more sense of it than her Grandpa!
So, thank you for reading these notes over the spring and summer and I will be back during harvest to report on trials results and progress.
Until then, best wishes and stay safe
Head of Agronomy