Get your cereals off to the best start while managing your workload this autumn

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The fight against black-grass starts now

Harvest is over, and the new season of drilling wheat and barley crops is beginning across the country. When to drill is an important consideration, particularly where black-grass threatens, and in many areas delaying drilling has to be thought of as a key part of the control strategy.

Once drilled, there are good reasons to apply a pre-emergence herbicide for black-grass within 48 hours of drilling. Read here why we suggest choosing Liberator, and learn more why last season was helpful for controlling the weed, while the previous year was harder, and what we can learn from each.

It is also critical when drilling treated seed to follow guidance to minimise risk to the environment and operators and to help #saveourseedtreatments, as well as helping get the crop off to the best possible start. Here are some great stewardship tips.

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Pre-emergence Top Tips

Drilling close up

Top Tip 1

Pre-emergence chemistry is the key to successful black-grass control in cereal crops – ensure you get this step of the programme right with Liberator as the cornerstone of the programme.

Weeds are most vulnerable at the time of germination. Liberator acts on both the roots and leaves of emerging black-grass and stops it dead. Trial results and on-farm experience show that Liberator consistently provides 60-80% control depending on weather and ground conditions.  

Drilling Stewardship

Drilling can feel like a race against time; can land be drilled before the winter weather closes in? But even when under pressure it is critical that good drilling practice is maintained.

Not only does that help get crops off to the best start, it will also help protect the operator, the environment and the products being used from the threat of being withdrawn.

For Jeff Claydon, farmer and Managing Director of Claydon Drills, drilling stewardship encompasses everything from pouring seed to ensuring that seed is planted into the right conditions.

Visit here for 5 top tips to keep in mind during the drilling period.




Philip Wright's advantage of different drill types

Drilling cereals

Direct drill

Making sure the seed has good seed-to-soil contact is essential with direct drills as there is little or no seedbed preparation. Forward speeds are also important as pulling a drill through can create fissures and cracking in the soil. 


Tackle emerged black-grass populations when they’re most susceptible

When it comes to black-grass, every percent of control counts. AHDB studies have shown that a decrease of just 5% in black-grass control can reduce yields by 0.5 t/ha, so taking every opportunity to reduce populations is critical to improve your final yield. It’s important to tackle black-grass when it’s most susceptible shortly after emergence.

Hamlet – the most effective post-emergence herbicide for black-grass in the autumn – will help you finish your programme with the best possible levels of control and also reduce the amount of seed returned to your fields’ next harvest.

Visit our Hamlet page to find out more about Hamlet including why, when and how to use it and also hear from growers who have experienced using the product on their farms.

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