Winter wheat in areas where rainfall has been higher in April than in drought prone areas such as the South and East, could be at risk of lodging.
Dr Pete Berry, head of crop physiology at ADAS said soil mineral nitrogen levels were likely to have been higher than average over winter because there had been minimal leaching and 2019 harvest crops were following crops which had tended to yield poorer than average.
Dr Berry says: “Risk of lodging is not as high as it was a month ago as crops had restricted N uptake and lost tillers due to a dry April. But for those that did not suffer in the April drought, there is a higher than typical lodging risk. It needs to be judged on a field by field basis.”
At GS32, if there are more than 900 shoots/sq.m, Mr Berry advises applying a PGR at the T2 timing. “PGRs can still be applied up to GS39,” he says.
Mr Berry also noted that most wheat varieties on the RL had a standing power score of 7 or less. “There are not many truly strong standers. Usually there are a few more with a standing power of 8.”