NFU members heard from three of Rothamsted’s top scientists working with oilseed rape, blackgrass and wheat genetics at the NFU regional combinable crops board meeting at the beginning of May.
Dr Sam Cook gave an enlightening presentation on her specialist topic, cabbage stem flea beetle in oilseed rape and was able to share the latest on her projects looking at increased on-farm plant diversity alongside OSR crops.
Dr David Comont focussed on the work he and his team had been carrying out on blackgrass and its potential growing resistance to herbicides and how cultural controls and the shift to spring cropping due to our wet autumns has had the positive effect of suppressing the weed for some individual farmers.
Andrew Riche gave an overview of WGIN (Wheat Genetic Improvement Network) Diversity Experiment and highlighted to attendees the lessons learnt on nitrogen use efficiency and improvements in wheat genetics through breeding from 16 years of data from this experiment.
Some excellent questions were raised from attendees and a Q&A sheet is being compiled to be circulated with the minutes in the next fortnight.
One BASIS point is available to those that attended or are watching the presentation at a later date. Please email your name and BASIS account number starting 20... to ZWFzdC5hbmdsaWFAbmZ1Lm9yZy51aw== to ensure this point is added to you records.
As mentioned at the meeting, the NFU regional team will liaise with Rothamsted to arrange a visit to the research facility. This is expected to be next spring, when their cropping is emerging across the project's sites such as Broadbalk.
You can view the meeting here.