HGCA – AHDB-HGCA publishes early snapshot of winter plantings

So the early indications of autumn plantings of wheat are down 12%; barley down 9% and OSR down much less at 3%. Spring barley unurprisingly is expected to be up by circa 40%. I expect there will be a similar story for spring beans, Linseed may also be up. Good luck with that particular crop! Still cant help but think the OSR picture is bleaker than than the small decrease at 3%, as there are a lot of poor crops out there. I not really convinced they will all survive, so the figure could be over 5% – at least. Now that brings me to another hobby horse of mine, would the OSR crops be in better order had they followed winter barley in the rotation? Earlier harvest, more timely cultivations and earlier establishment. I accept the GM for winter barley is lower but the over farm margins may be better? Whilst we are on topic what about adding a pulse to the rotation? Lets consider rotational grassland too. Ok, i am going off topic and extreme here, arent I? Or am I? http://www.hgca.com/content.output/6438/6438/News/News/AHDB-HGCA%20publishes%20early%20snapshot%20of%20winter%20plantings.mspx

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More wise words from Orson’s Oracle

http://www.niab.com/blog/post/54 This time is discussing LERAP Buffer Zones and the propsed new regs. “…chlorpyrifos would need a buffer zone of 72 metres….” surely that’s just going to far. Sorry to be alarmist but is that thin end of the wedge getting a bit thicker ? How many farmers filled in ditches to get around the need for buffer zones compared to how many have gone for bio-diverse sown buffers? Seems ironic that the latter would be penalised. That said I have often commented that the usual grass buffer zones would be far more beneficial if they contained taller species to act as a better buffer. Pun most definately intended this time. Surely the taller bird cover/environmental/ biodiversity mixtures now available would be preferable to relatively short tussocky grasses. Reduced drift:increased bio-diversity – this has got to be worth considering surely? Well worth reading Orsons Oracle every issue. Agronomyman

Plant breeders say new drought-hardy corn testing well in U.S.

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSL1E8KEAX420120918?irpc=932 It seems ironic to be discussing the need for drought tolerance crop breeding in such a wet year however globally there is a real need. In many ways the development if GMDT crops globally mirrors the need for innovation in plant breeding in the UK. Imagine if the dry weather we experienced in March and April had continued for a few more weeks.

Article from Agrovista re: Blackgrass control strategy

Well worth reading this piece, i have to say I really like the comment that “..we can learn a lot from organic production….” because its absolutely right, we can – and should. If you have not already done so I recommend you download the App from Agrovista. I have no commercial interest with Agrovista I just think its a useful tool.