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Welcome to 365 South & South West

Welcome to the home of South & South West region advice & expertise

Hosted by your local Bayer technical managers who are on hand to offer advice and expertise on crop growing strategies. We may not be able to meet you face-to-face at the moment, but you can still join the Bayer team and leading industry experts online for guided walk-throughs and valuable insight.

Richard Prankerd

South East

Commerical Technical Manager for the South East

Matt Siggs

South West

Commercial Technical Manager for the South West

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Five things to consider when growing crops this October in the south

Crop Progress

Oilseed rape crops drilled in early to mid-August have grown away fast, helped by bits of rain. There has been some cabbage stem flea beetle activity, and some treatment with pyrethroids, although efficacy needs to be checked.

While earlier drillings have reached 6-8 true leaves, first half of September drillings are still emerging as reach the last week of September, and yet to get going. But there are no horror stories and growers are feeling optimistic.

Further west of Exeter, I get the feeling the winter cereal area will be down after the problems we’ve had keeping crops going through incredibly wet winters, and that spring barleys have outyielded winter barley.

Those growing malting barley have been drilling and some wheats have started going in too from mid-September, although agronomists have been trying to keep the brakes on.


Matt’s agronomy tips for October

1. Delaying drilling will help agronomically

2. Metribuzin products useful for annual meadow grass

4. Use SpotCheck to assess oilseed rape disease risk

5. Continue brassica disease control programmes


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Black-grass seeds

Matt Siggs – covers the South West

Q. When did you join Bayer?
A. July 2020

Q. Did you always want to work in agriculture?
A. While I grew up on a family farm, initially after university I worked in a hotel chain as a sales manager. But I was missing country life so I moved back to our sheep and arable farm and managed a farm plastic recycling business.

Life took an interesting turn when my Dad, got me involved in setting up a Brazilian style farming operation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which involved travelling to Africa, Brazil and China.

I also travelled extensively when managing a carbon management project for Duchy College, and it was only when that came to an end that I looked at becoming an agronomist, firstly with Agrovista and now Bayer.

Q. That’s some journey! Changing tack, how do you think agriculture is going to change in the future?
A. Lots of ways: more contract farming because like I did younger generations have moved away from farms but may not come back to day-to-day farming. There’s going to be more emphasis on marginal land being changed to wildlife habitats, while productive land will have more focus, and greater use of remote sensing technology and precision application.

Matt Siggs

Richard Prankerd – covers the South East

Q. When did you join Bayer?
A. March 2011

Q.Did you always want to work in agriculture?
A. Initially I never considered agriculture until I spent 6 months working for Bayer as a trials assistant. I discovered a highly technical industry driven by science. I stayed with Bayer in field trials, before becoming a CTM in January 2020.

Q.What innovation are you most excited about for the future of farming?
A. Digital farming. It is just in the early stages of making a huge contribution. Already services, such as Climate FieldView, are helping to identify cropping areas where we can improve performance, and support the use of precision agriculture.

As support reduces, it will be increasingly important to understand how to farm both sustainably and profitably, and digital farming and access to real-time data will play a key role.

Richard Prankerd

More current issues, results and up & coming trials

Three pointers to establishing the best oilseed rape and cereals this September in the south

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Seven ways to help protect crops this April in the South

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5 priorities for growers in the south this March

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6 agronomy tips to keep promising crops progressing in the south

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