Following the success of last year’s open day, ADAS (an RSK company) in Rosemaund, UK, once again teamed up with AHDB arable connections at their open day on Tuesday, 18 June. After an incredibly wet week, the sky cleared and the rain held off. Despite clashing with two other events on the same day, more than 100 farmers, agronomists and clients attended.
Indoors, static demonstrations from AHDB, ADAS, Red Tractor, a moisture meter clinic and the Wye & Usk foundation added to the draw. Topic-specific seminars on brome control and herbicide resistance prevention (Laura Davies, ADAS weed researcher) and farm infrastructure, pesticide storage and handling areas (Eoin Murphy, ADAS agri environment advisor) were well attended and added an extra dimension to the day.
The main event, a walk around the 120 trial plots, included demonstrations from ADAS staff from physiology, pathology, entomology and weeds. For wheat, Phil Bounds looked at managing the loss of existing chemistry. Jonathan Blake and Rebecca Joynt demonstrated the efficacy of current and future chemistry and Chloe Morgan outlined tailoring fungicide programmes to variety. Steve Ellis shared his top tips for barley yellow dwarf virus control in a world without neonicotinoid seed treatments, and Roger Sylvester-Bradley presented the results from the Yield Enhancement Network. A demonstration of the 37 winter wheat varieties on the recommended list also generated much interest, showing the strengths and weaknesses of all the current wheat varieties.
For oilseed rape, Phil Walker presented fungicide performance results while Caroline Young looked into predicting the risk of Sclerotinia infection. For oats, the growth guide was launched by Sarah Clarke as she shared recent developments in nitrogen use. Growers also got the chance to test their ability to identify diseases in cereals and oilseeds with Tim Boor and in weeds with Sarah Cook and Laura Davies.