Avoid Lodging in 2020 with Clayton’s range of PGRs

Posted on 31 October 2019

Root lodging caused by loss of anchorage of crown roots in the soil is the most damaging and prevalent type of lodging in the UK, often occurring during very wet periods in early summer. Whilst stem lodging often occurs closer to harvest when stem strength can reduce by up to 50% with grain fill in the ear. Good agronomic practices e.g. later drilling date and lower seed rates help produce stronger roots and better anchorage to protect against root lodging, whilst using PGRs can be vital to help prevent stem lodging and help against root lodging.

How do PGRs work?
Gibberellins (natural plant growth hormones) are produced at the nodes to initiate cell elongation below the growing point and PGRs such as chlormequat and trinexapac act by inhibiting the biosynthesis of gibberellin, whereas ethephon breaks down ethylene to inhibit elongation. Early PGR applied at GS30/31 or at GS32 needs to work quickly to shorten and strengthen the lower internodes. PGRs are an integral part of effectively managing lodging risk and growers should carefully monitor crop growth stage to ensure accurate timing application.

PGR benefits include:

  • Quick, safe and reliable activity
  • Shorten and strengthen lower internodes
  • Stem thickening, even tillering and improve rooting
  • Shorten upper internodes to prevent stem lodging and reduce brackling

The potential implications of lodging?
Reduced yield, lower quality and increased combining and drying costs, with economic loss greatest when crops lodge early in the season. On average 20% of the UK wheat area is lost to lodging every 3-4 years. In severe cases between 50-75% of field yield can be lost if crops lodge at ear emergence. Later lodging has less effect on yield but will impair quality e.g. Hagberg falling number and often causes harvesting delays which reduce farm profitability.

To avoid this…………………

……….Make sure to assess lodging risk this coming spring!

Watch out for wet or waterlogged soils which would put a high proportion of crops at risk of stem or root lodging and ensure crops are assessed for lodging risk routinely every year so that at risk crops can receive careful management early enough to protect yield and quality. Careful consideration should be taken to the lodging risk scores of each variety allowing a tailored PGR programme.

Application Timings of PGRs:

1) Early

  • Produces shorter lower internodes, thicker and stronger stems, reducing lodging
  • Enhanced rooting for better anchorage and uptake of water and nutrients
  • Enhance tiller survival

2) Mid

  • Reduce apical dominance and enhance tiller retention
  • Shortening/strengthening of internodes to prevent stem lodging

3) Late

  • Shortening of upper internodes
  • Reduction of stem lodging
  • Reduction of brackling in barley

Clayton Plant Protection – PGRs
Clayton market a wide range of PGRs to suit all timings. PGR products from Clayton benefit from flexible labels allowing application of both single or split doses for certain crops to manage lodging risk accordingly. See labels for further information.

Jadex Plus – Active ingredient: 720 g/l chlormequat chloride

Chlormephon UK, Socom – Active ingredient(s): 305 g/l chlormequat chloride + 155 g/l ethephon

Telsee – Active ingredient: 480 g/l ethephon

Clayton Proud – Active ingredient(s): 305 g/l mepiquat chloride + 155 g/l ethephon

Clayton Trinexapac – A plant growth regulator containing 250 g/l trinexapac-ethyl for cereals. Clayton has submitted for a generic registration of this product.

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