Septoria poses the primary threat as conditions promote spread of disease
The weather has been the dominant influence on tillage farms over the last number of weeks, with spraying particularly disrupted.
The T1 fungicide applications on wheat were delayed or applied in less than ideal conditions. It remains to be seen how successful they were.
Septoria is the main threat and weather conditions at present are suitable for spreading the disease from leaf to leaf.
The benefit of a T0 fungicide could be realised this season, as some of my growers did not get to apply the T1 until May.
The sight of waterlogged tramlines is a bit depressing at this time of the year and will only deteriorate with more passes. I have noticed in the past higher disease levels in tramlines where muck was thrown up on the crop, due to poorer fungicide coverage. Damaged tramlines also lead to problems with soil compaction and water percolation through the soil.
Wheat crops will have received the bulk of the nitrogen application at this stage and weather conditions from now on will be critical to maximise green leaf area. The performance of the SDHI fungicide group will be interesting this season with good crop structures and potentially high disease pressure. The full disease spectrum was present on wheat at the T1 application, owing to a combination of weather and the wide range of varieties drilled and will provide a good test of the fungicide programmes.
The dry conditions in March have increased the levels of take-all in wheat and barley in susceptible crop rotations and as crops grow on, the typical stunted crop symptoms with yellow leaf tipping become more noticeable. The application of a foliar nutrient (N&P) and strobilurine fungicide could be beneficial, but future weather will dictate how severe the infection will be.
Winter barley crops are at awns appearing stage and are relatively disease free, with growers planning to apply the next fungicide. Ramularia protection should be considered on this application.