Don’t forget the take-all risk

Following a season which saw the lowest average wheat yields in five years, growers are being reminded to do everything they can to reduce the impact of soil-borne disease, take-all, in second wheats.

Many are attributing the poor yields to the adverse summer weather, but with the current wheat price of £180/t, take-all remains a major threat to profitability, explains Laurence Power, technical manager at Certis.

“The window for drilling winter wheat is quickly drawing in, and although the level of take-all inoculum in soils starts to decline later in the drilling window, the disease can still reduce yields by up to 50%.

“Selecting a seed dressed with Latitude (silthiofam) is a good insurance policy for winter wheat, even in later drilled situations,” he says.

“Warm and dry conditions can exacerbate take-all, damaging the roots of the crop and limiting water and nutrient uptake. So, protecting roots now so they are better equipped to deal with the season ahead is key,” explains Laurence.

“Silthiofam creates a zone of protection around vulnerable emerging roots, helping to suppress the take-all pathogen. This helps the plant to develop robust rooting to take up water and nutrients more readily and gives the crop chance to achieve its yield potential.

“Trials with Latitude have demonstrated that this positive effect on yield, grain quality and specific weight can be achieved in crops drilled from early October through to November,” he says.

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About The Author

John Swire - Deputy editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer as well as responsibility for the Agronomist and Arable Farmer and Farm Business websites. After 17 years milking cows on the family farm John started writing about agriculture in 1998 and has since written for a variety of publications and has developed a wide circle of contacts within the industry. When not working John is a season ticket holder at Stoke City and also of late has become a fitness freak, listing cycling, swimming and walking as his exercises of choice.