Regional Trial Sites ~ Summer Open Days 2019

This summer’s programme of events at our Regional Technology Centres promises an exciting insight into the ways farm yields can be improved through variety selection and targeted agronomy.

On show at a range of trial sites around the country during June and July will be demonstrations that home in on four main topics; the latest cereal and oilseed rape varieties, soil health, precision farming and yield improvement.

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Variety demonstrations
The majority of locations will feature treated and untreated comparisons of a wide range of new and existing varieties, providing a great opportunity to evaluate agronomic performance under local conditions and soil type. Variety choice is a major decision, but with the issues around fungicides and evolving disease resistance, there is increasing focus on using genetics to ease crop management. We will be discussing new hybrid varieties and what they may offer the grower. This is an ideal chance to see how varieties perform in your area and discuss all aspects of variety selection and markets with Hutchinsons specialists.


Omnia Precision Agronomy
Practical ways to maximise yields will be discussed, including examples of how our unique Omnia precision farming service can be used to identify long-term yield variations within fields to target agronomy more precisely and improve profitability. Among the multiple functions within Omnia, we will show how it can be used to incorporate yield maps collected over  several years with cost of production data to tailor management decisions within individual fields.


Soil health
Soil health issues such as drainage, pH, compaction and fertility are often major causes of yield variations, but there can be “quick wins” to address many common problems, which will be discussed at the open days. Our aim is always to resolve the issues and restore the productivity of low-yielding areas, but we are also exploring ways farmers can maximise the environmental benefits from unproductive areas of land.


Yield improvement
There will also be a chance to hear how plant and ear numbers can be manipulated to improve yields, drawing on our latest research from the Yield Enhancement Network (YEN) project. Detailed information on crop development (such as plant and tiller counts), disease resistance and plant and soil nutrient levels has been collected at all of the sites and will be explained at the demonstrations. Grain and tissue analyses are another area being used to build a picture of crop and soil performance, so look out for some interesting findings from our own analyses within YEN.


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