Words supplied by Bill Cabout, Assistant Retail Manager
For the next three months our focus for agri-chemical is on the following; fodder crops, pre-emergence sprays on autumn sown crops, grass grub control in pasture, and use of gibberellic acid to increase pasture growth.
Most sprays on fodder beet have been completed. If signs of disease appear, such as rust, powdery mildew, cercospora and ramularia leaf spot a fungicide can be applied. A key thing to remember is that there is a 42 day withholding period before the fodder beet can be fed.
Fodder brassica crops will need spraying with insecticides if the insect pressure gets too high. Insect pressure was low early in the season and we are starting to see a number of white butterflies flying in crops. This means there will be caterpillars in a few weeks, therefore an insecticide will need to be applied. This would also be a good time to apply aphicide to control any aphids that are present rather than having to comeback later to spray. If it stays dry insect pressure will increase especially in dryland crops.
Autumn Sown Crops
For crops planted after harvest it is recommended to drill with either Diazinon granules or Chlorpyrifos granules to help control grass grub. Both Diazinon granules and Chlorpyrifos granules (Suscon Green) are in plentiful supply this season.
If there is a lot of trash it is important to look at slug control, especially if the crops have been irrigated. We have a range of slug baits available in store. The key to slug control is more baits per square metre.
Make sure to control slugs and insect pests when crops are drilled to ensure successful establishment of the new crop. If these pests are not controlled at this time it will create a problem where the only solution is a re-drill. Controlling pests earlier is a more low effective method.
Depending on the crop pre-emergence sprays are required to control weeds as we go into the winter months.
If hairgrass is a problem, we recommend the use of Firebird or Invado. The choice of which one used depends on other weeds are present, as Firebird also has diflufenican in it as well. These chemicals are often used with Asset (Terbuthylazine) for control of a greater range of weeds. If wild oats are a problem, Avadex Extra can be used pre-sowing to help control them. This is an alternative if you have problems with controlling wild oats later in the season.
We also have Sakura, a new herbicide from Bayer for controlling autumn germinating ryegrass, vulpia hairgrass, annual poa and soft brome, plus it also gives suppression of autumn germinating ryegrass, ripgut brome, prairie grass and wild oats. This can be used instead of Firebird or Invado.
Again, Firebird or Invado can be used as above to control weeds pre-emergent.
To control a range of annual grasses and other weeds, ethofumesate is used pre-emergence in both perennial and annual ryegrass.
Grass grub control in pasture
This is the time of year to control grass grub in pasture using Diazinon liquid. This must be applied to short pasture and it needs to be washed in by at least 12 mm of rain before it dries on the foliage. This season we have plenty of stock, but this can run out quickly. We advise placing your order early to make you do not miss out.
We can increase the grass growth on pasture by 30-60% within a three week period by using gibberellic acid during the autumn period. For this to be successful there must be sufficient fertility and moisture to support this extra growth and liquid nitrogen is often applied to help this. Both granular and liquid versions of gibberellic acid are available and needs to be applied 3-5 days after grazing. We have liquid nitrogen available in 200 litre drums and 1,000 litre pods to go with the gibberellic acid.
With all the above scenarios talk to your Ruralco rep for the best options for you and your situation.