The Spring drought has caused much concern.
For many of us farming with blackgrass this is not good news, as a higher proportion of spring-sown crops is necessary to aid control of the weed.
This is fine if you are farming kind soils, but not so good if you are blessed with medium to heavy soils…and these are the soils on which blackgrass thrive.
Generally, my spring-sown crops have established reasonably well, but the growth has been somewhat slow with the cold, drying east winds.
Sugar beet has suffered particularly from bird grazing, which has killed some plants and severely retarded others. This adds further stress to the crop and makes weed control more difficult as the beet is much more sensitive to herbicides.
Yellow rust has affected various varieties of wheat this spring, some unexpectedly. The relatively clean variety ‘Lili” has got the disease.
Yellow rust is not particularly difficult to control if you are expecting it, but can cause problems once established.
This variety was due to be dropped from my cropping next year anyway, but this has just reinforced that decision.
Hopefully, by the time you read this, if the weather forecast is correct, some of the drought concerns may have been alleviated.