Getting spring barley off to a good start

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“Delays to drilling mean correct crop nutrition will be key to getting spring barley off to a good start this year,” reports Natalie Wood of YARA.

“Many soils are saturated again after having dried up in the warmer weather in mid-March. This means spring drilling may be delayed as the list of jobs becomes slightly backlogged.

When you do get round to spring planting then nutrition will be key to getting the crop off to a good start in potentially wet soils.

Adding a YaraMila compound NPK compound to the seedbed, with a minimum of 60% of the total nitrogen, has shown to give the best results. YaraMila compound fertilizers all have the full nutrient composition in each prill/granule therefore wherever it is placed you’re will be guaranteed to get the exact composition of N, P and K as stated in whatever ratio the analysis is.

The other 40% of the nitrogen should be applied at growth stage 13. This could also be variably applied with the use of tools such as the Yara N-Sensor to get the most out of the application and ensure the crop grows in a uniform manner. uniformly. The N-Sensor has an algorithm specifically for spring barley so is a useful tool in spring management.

Manganese (Mn) is also an important nutrient to consider for barley. Barley is prone to mildew and Mn gives some protection towards this by helping to inhibit fungal growth. Mn helps to prevent the build-up of nitrates within the leaf, upon which mildew fungi feed off. In recent trials the addition of 1l/ha of YaraVita Mantrac Pro (at growth stage 13) gave a 0.5t/ha yield benefit (the same amounts of NPK were applied to both treatments). At today’s prices this would give an extra £65/ha on yield. Taking into account the cost of Mantrac Pro this would still be £58/ha benefit.”

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