Standing up for peas this spring

Between 50% and 75% of combining peas are now drilled, depending on where in the UK you look,” says Theo Labuda, managing director of LSPB. “But that means there are still a significant number of growers waiting to drill – and even to choose their variety.

“Experienced pea growers will know that standing power is a key issue, but new or returning growers might appreciate a reminder of that. It is one of the potential bugbears of pea growing and the cause of many a gap between what’s seen in the field and what ends up in the barn.

“Campus has a leading position in the UK marketplace with over 20% of the large blue peas certified in the UK – and a key reason for the variety’s popularity with growers is its reputation for high standing power on the farm – evidenced by its ‘8’ on its Recommended List appearances – compared to the large blue norm of a ‘5’ or a ‘6’.

“As important, is its excellent reputation with end users, with a good thousand seed weight, protein content and lack of brown staining.

“There is also more good news in the offing for pea growers with further improvements in varieties on the horizon. The yields of new varieties added to the 2019 Recommended List and planned to reach growers next season show a very worthwhile yield improvement over older ones.

“For example, our top-yielding large blue pea variety Bluetime is a very significant 12% above the lowest yielding variety on the list. And yield increases from new varieties come with agronomic pluses, such as the ‘8’ for Downy mildew from our other Provisionally Recommended variety Blueman,” Mr Labuda adds.

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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.