Good year for most crops

Crops have generally done well, but will still be loss-making for many farmers, due to low grain prices, said Teagasc advisors last week.

They said the winter barley harvest will begin within one or two weeks.

Lodging was common in most winter barley crops; growers were advised to put measures in place to prevent birds feeding in the crops.

Yield potential looked good, but generally lower yields than last year are expected.

At the other end of the scale of farmer expectations, the year has started well for potato growers. Despite a late start, main crops are in full canopy extension stage, and there have been opportunities to get fungicides onto crops. 

Blight levels remained low.

Meanwhile, the early potato harvest started more than three weeks ago, and reasonable yields and prices were reported. 

Winter wheat and oat crops remained reasonably disease-free. 

Growers should act to reduce bird damage in lodged crops.

Aphids numbers appeared low in wheat, only apply a systemic aphicide if more than five aphids are found per head. 

Some advanced winter oilseed rape crops had already been dessicated; yield prospects are good for the crop.

Most bean crops had finished flowering and filling the pods. Spring crops grew well, notably maize and beet.

In cereals, final fungicide treatments were completed on most crops. 

Maize yield looked promising, and fodder beet growth had been excellent, with total ground cover generally reached in June.

Forage crops were advised it is too late to drill kale; options such as rape or a kale-rape hybrid should be considered. 

They should watch out for Diamond Back Moth larvae in warm conditions on kale crops.


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