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Cropping Update – Harvest 2018

In a perfect world we should have all finished harvest by now but the recent changeable weather in Cumbria has delayed spring barley combining. Most of the wheat is in now, most going as whole crop or crimp with some excellent reported yields. We have reports from 2 customers combining wheat at 5.2 tonnes per acre and verified over the weighbridge!
Autumn Cereals & Agronomy
Sales of barley and wheat seed has been brisk, but with a lot of orders to come as people finish harvesting. Autumn seed is fairly plentiful, depending on variety.
Sow barleys from early September through to mid- October on lighter land. Wheats can be sown from end September onwards. If you wish to sow earlier, such as for heavier land then choose a variety such as Revelation which will put less leaf on before winter – again give us a call for advice. Remember to increase sowing rates for later sown wheats – late October onwards.
Spray wheats & barleys as soon as possible after drilling. Please remember that grass weed problems can only be sorted in the autumn for barleys. Products are available for pre-emergence or post – this means that you can spray a residual as soon as the crop is sown, but before weed or crop emergence. Alternatively spray after the crop has emerged usually at 1-3 leaf stage – the earlier the better generally! This is because the active ingredients work best before weed emergence or at a very small stage after emergence. Also there are now some very effective herbicides for use on wheats in the spring which will take out fairly large grass weeds as well as wild oats. Remember our agronomists Mark, Stephen & Brian are only a phone call away for the most cost effective solutions.
Autumn Fertilisers.
Many farms have adequate or high levels of phosphate, so don’t waste money applying extra if you do not need it. Check lime and nutrient levels from recent soil sample analysis and act on that information. On some farms we can grow cereal crops with P and K from soil reserves and home supplied organics (FYM/Slurry etc.), so a lot of money can be saved.
Where needed we have available autumn grades of fertiliser such as 0.20.30 or 0.16.36 so give us a call to discuss. Remember we can provide a full package from seed through to harvest, so you can get the best advice and save money.
Grass Seeds and Weeds
Continue to sow perennial grass mixes up to September 10-20th. After this time it is getting too late as you require 6 weeks of no- frost weather for enough establishment cover to carry the grass through to the spring. Recent mild autumns have encouraged later sowings, however if the grass seeds do not establish quickly enough you will be left with an ingress of ‘weed’ grasses by spring.

Italian Ryegrass mixes can continue to be sown up to mid-October and is often an opportunity after maize. Any reseeds should be sprayed for weeds before end of October, this allows the grass to tiller and establish ground cover without the smothering effect of chickweed & others. September can also be a good time to spray perennial grassland weeds like docks and thistles with a translocated herbicide. Plants are starting to send nutrients down to their roots ready for winter, so spraying docks now will be quite effective and leave the swards cleaner come next spring. Remember as long as the weeds are actively growing (ie before any frosts) it will be cost effective.
Slug Damage?
Due to the dry summer, slug levels have been low, but since the rains started in early August the populations are increasing. Monitor your cereal crops and treat at the first signs of damage. Many customers drill wheat seed with slug pellets added, especially after oilseed rape. Add slug pellets to fertiliser and apply as soon as crops germinate and repeat 2-3 weeks later if damage is still evident. The slug pellets we are using now are very effective as well as durable, rainfast and because they are not ‘metaldehyde’ based are very safe when considering possible water course and run off pollution. Hence there is no restriction in water catchment areas and no buffer zone.
Check that you are qualified to spread pellets either with an ATV applicator or fertiliser spreader.

Joining Aspatria Farmers

We always welcome new farmer members and as well as talking to our team please feel free to complete the attached New Members Form and mail it to us with your cheque and we will handle it from there!

Aspatria Farmers | aspatriafarmers.co.uk
Station Works, Aspatria, Cumbria, CA7 3JW
info@aspatriafarmers.co.uk | 01697 320207 | Copyright 2018 Aspatria Farmers Ltd.