Crop management techniques to mitigate drought effects

AGRIBUSINESS Frontier Agriculture’s technical team is carrying out work at its Lincolnshire demonstration site to investigate how growers can better manage crops during drought conditions.

The Environment Agency and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology have both indicated, in recent weeks, farmers in some regions may well be short of water again next year, says the company.

David Robinson, Frontier technical manager, says: “Whatever your view on climate change and its relation to our weather pattern, we are seeing more frequent spells of dry weather than in the past and some say this is set to continue.

“We need to help farmers find ways to cope when this happens. The work at Riseholme will help us find ways to mitigate the effects of drought conditions in wheat.”

Understanding

The ‘drought mitigation’ trial, which is taking place in partnership with the University of Lincoln, will improve understanding of the consequences of prolonged dry spells and could help establish new ways to improve a crop’s performance during drought spells, says the company.

Two wheat varieties, Oakley and hybrid Hystar, have been sown and will be grown under conditions of restricted water supply.

A range of agronomic treatments will be applied, with the aim of identifying those offering relief to a crop suffering from drought.

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