Time T1 cereal PGR to get back in control
Slow growing conditions through early spring may have tempted some growers and agronomists to hold back on PGR treatments with T0 fungicide applications.
But with crops poised for spring growth, applications at the T1 timing now need to be targeted at maximising height reduction and increasing stem strength that will reduce issues of lodging and loses at harvest, urged Syngenta Technical Manager, Georgina Wood.
Moddus is particularly well suited to this season’s conditions to encourage stem thickness and effectively reduce plant height helping to keep crops standing.
After the exceptional cold snap in late March and continuing through early April, Miss Wood highlighted that plants held in check by cold weather can race through growth stages, as soon as conditions are suitable.
Although flooding and water logging has been less severe this winter across most of the country, compared to the previous season, the relatively high water table is still likely to have left plants with shallow rooting.
“Earlier applications of Moddus have the greatest effects on root enhancement. However, where these have been missed, the reduced anchorage makes managing lodging risk now even more important.”
A T1 PGR application, at GS31-32, is the optimum timing to manage the risk of lodging by reducing crop height and enhancing stem thickness and strength.
“Higher risk situations, including exposed sites or tall varieties, should be treated as a priority and considering the use of higher rates of both Moddus and chlormequat,” Georgina advocated.
Phosphor imaging of treated plants has shown that when Moddus is applied in tank mix with chlormequat, it physically enhances the uptake of chlormequat too. “For growers looking to maximise PGR effects, particularly where T0 treatments may have been missed, that could be an especially effective combination,” she suggested.
For wheat crops that could mean up to 0.2 l/ha of Moddus with a 50% dose of chlormequat. That combination would also be recommended as the second spray in a programmed approach for hybrid barley. Furthermore, crops in high-risk situations may also benefit from a later treatment with ethephon.
For further information regarding lodging risk and suggested PGR programmes for your specific situation, the InSpire decision support calculator incorporates Syngenta’s wheat variety profiling data with agronomic and seasonal risk factors.