New direction for shady Rye-grass trials
Exciting new trials at a dedicated Syngenta Rye-grass Focus Site in Yorkshire is exploring the potential of direction of drilling to further suppress Rye-grass populations, through shading by well-established crops.
Vigorous crop growth has previously been shown to have significant benefits in shading out some of the impact of grassweeds.
Syngenta Regional Trials Manager, Andy Cunningham, explained that drilling east to west should give a greater shading effect, comparted to north-south drills.
Allied to that, plots are also looking at the combined effects of drilling date, seed rate, herbicide programmes and more vigorous hybrid barley, along with the benefits of Vibrance Duo to create a more competitive crop with faster establishment and deeper rooting.
Using innovative data-logger technology (above), Andy will be able to accurately record the amount of light reaching weeds throughout the day under the different trial options, along with plant counts of weed populations and final yield results.
These shading trials are just one of the innovative Rye-grass management techniques being explored on then dedicated trials site, alongside herbicide programmes.
The Yorkshire Rye-grass Focus Site has been set up to mirror some of the revolutionary trials and valuable practical results being created by the Syngenta Black-grass Focus Site, at Barton in Cambridgeshire.
“We have a site on a farm, near Doncaster, in the heart of an area where Rye-grass poses a real headache for growers,” reported Andy. “There are undoubtedly instances where herbicide resistance in Rye-grass is becoming an increasingly serious issue."
The high pressure site has already seen Rye-grass populations in untreated plots reach in excess of 50 plants per m2, with more yet to emerge, warned Andy.
“Finding practical Integrated Crop Management techniques that can be implemented on farm, alongside identifying the optimum use of herbicide options, will be essential to tackle Rye-grass issues more effectively,” he advised.
“We’re seeking to pre-empt what has happened in Black-grass,” he added. “To demonstrate novel techniques that are proven to work and offer growers solutions to manage Rye-grass weed populations at economic and agronomic sustainable levels.”
Growers will have the chance to visit the Syngenta Rye-grass Focus Site at a series of Open Days and events over the season, or follow the progress on #grassweeddiaries and website reports.