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green horizons blog

Green Horizons Trials Update: Part 3 | Green Horizons Blog

Blog - 15.08.22

We have a comprehensive range of Green Horizons trials planned for 2022/23 covering aspects of nutrition, biosolutions, new chemistries and maximising soil resilience.

These trials were kindly supported by our Green Horizons sponsors: UPL, FMC, Corteva, BASF, Bayer and Interagro. Here we provide a brief summary of plans for the coming year.

You can read about the Green Horizons trials carried out in 2022 here (update 1) and here (update 2).

REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE v CONVENTIONAL AGRICULTURE

Objective: To explore the benefits and barriers of regenerative agriculture in County Durham

Location: West Whorley Hill Farm (Agrii Innovation Award Winner, 2021)

Crop: Winter wheat

Description: This is a long-term project with varying cultivations and rotations, to monitor the process of converting to a more regenerative system. Soil analysis is being taken from plant roots and between rows to assess biological activity and soil health.

Samples taken from the direct drilled (left) v conventional areas (right).

VARIETY x CULTIVATION TRIAL

Objective: Evaluate the performance of varieties across cultivation types (ploughed v direct drill).

Location: Huntingdon (8 year direct drilled and cover cropped), Braintree (40 years continuous wheat and just starting to integrate direct drilling), Kent (long history of direct drilling and cover cropping).

Crop type: Multiple winter wheat varieties

Description: We will be trialling 24 variety/seed treatment combinations – some on a continuous wheat ploughed site and some on a direct drilled site., to see whether cultivation practices impact variety performance.

BI-CROPPING

Objective: To understand the effects of terminating one of the species with a range of products and methods.

Location: Fowlmere

Crop: Spring oats and spring beans

Description: This work has been motivated by questions around seed rates for a bi-crop. Work has also previously been done in this area by PGRO. As part of this work, we will also be exploring what the result would be if we decide to knock out e.g. the beans or the oats alone?

FURTHER WORK ON VARIETY BLENDS

Objective: Examine the growth and disease differences between the blend and its component parts.

Location: National trial sites

Crop: Multiple winter wheat varieties.

Description: We plan to hand plant individual seeds of different varieties and mark the location of varieties within the blend plots. Throughout the season we will monitor how the tagged plants differ from the component variety plots.

GREENER FUNGICIDE CHOICES: REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE v CONVENTIONAL

Objective: To assess how different programmes and rates perform in a regenerative v conventional system.

Locations: Cambridge and Dorset.

Crop: Winter wheat: Gleam and Fitzroy.

Description: We have planned numerous treatments with our sponsors across two varieties; one with low disease tolerance and one with higher disease tolerance. This trial will be replicated four times and conducted in two different geographies/soil types. The aim it to explore whether greener programmes perform better if supported by a healthier and more biologically active soil.

Harvest is well underway at these sites, and we look forward to seeing and sharing the results this autumn. The latest news and results from our Green Horizons trials will be published on our website throughout the year. Please visit www.agrii.co.uk/greenhorizons to keep up to date.

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