Cover crop destruction

Discussion in 'Direct Drilling Crops & Agronomy' started by Hay Farmer, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. Hay Farmer

    Hay Farmer Member

    Location:
    Herefordshire
    Really good cover crops here for once, a mixture of vetch, oats, phacelia, radish, rape, volunteer cereals and weeds. In April, I will be direct drilling (disc drill) spring cereals into them. What should I be doing to the CC’s? I’m thinking of flailing them fairly soon then post drilling glyphosate?

    Or, could I leave them and drill spring Barley or Oats straight into the cover crop, followed by glyphosate.

    It seems a shame to destroy them now and leave the ground semi bare for 3 months, when they are doing so much good.

    In the past I’ve always left the CC’s growing to the last minute, sprayed glyphosate then drilled a few days later, but then the CC’s were never very thick.

    TIA
     
  2. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    Location:
    Matching Green
    I have no experience in growing cover crops, but they are something I'm looking into with a view to planting some this coming autumn. As a heavy land farmer with a tine drill I am anxious about having a wet green mass to deal with in the spring. I am thinking about keeping to species that don't produce too much biomass and some that may not survive the winter. However one cover crop supplier suggested that if you spray off a few weeks pre-drilling with Glyphosate plus 2,4D the green material becomes brittle and will collapse in front of the drill. Perhaps a way of dealing with your situation?
     
  3. Banana Bar

    Banana Bar Member

    Location:
    Bury St Edmunds
    Hmm
     
  4. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    Location:
    Matching Green
    On the legality side there is Kyleo. Whether it actually works I have no experience but the person who suggested it is someone I have known for many years, not a Johnny come lately.
     
  5. yellowbelly

    yellowbelly Member

    Location:
    N.Lincs
  6. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    Location:
    Matching Green
    They'll work, they're slowly becoming thicker on the ground in Essex, but I don't see myself as a sheep farmer just yet.
     
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  7. Hay Farmer

    Hay Farmer Member

    Location:
    Herefordshire
    I can drill through most things, was more worried about the spring oats or barley being adversely effected by either the mass of dying material, or glyphosate uptake from the surrounding roots.
     
  8. Hay Farmer

    Hay Farmer Member

    Location:
    Herefordshire
    Got a few inlamb ewes, thought they didn’t like phacelia (which is the majority of the CC’s.) Didn’t want to put the lambs at risk.
     
  9. yellowbelly

    yellowbelly Member

    Location:
    N.Lincs
    Sorry no experience of phacelia. We're currently 'helping reduce' some cover crops for a neighbour - quite a mix of species but no phalecia.
     
  10. Shutesy

    Shutesy Moderator

    Location:
    Stansted
    Using Kyleo here to destroy cover crops this year. Previous times i have used it in other situations its done a very good job. Not sure about the extra breaking down effect. It may just work quicker than straight glyphosate with the 2-4d in the mix.
     
  11. Wigeon

    Wigeon Member

    I've just said yes to putting sheep on this till the end of the month. Heavy land, so will be watching the weather. It's spring oats, vetch and wheat volunteers. All a bit of an experiment!
     

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  12. rob1

    rob1 Member

    Location:
    wiltshire
    He wouldsay that wouldnt he, If your on heavy soil then you dont want cover in a wet time, the land will stay wet and cold, Simon cowell from essex and who knows more than almost anyone from the uk on dd is on very heavy clay and doesnt rate CC,he uses a simtech as we do and it appears from the photo you do, they will drill through quite heavy residue as long as its not too wet.
    Ignore some of the newly converted folk who farm boys land and for whom CC may work

    Cover crops on boys land compared to heavy land is like comparing a mf35 with a 2018 tractor
     
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  13. Michael S

    Michael S Member

    Location:
    Matching Green
    I wouldn't totally disagree with your sentiment, I still wonder whether a mixture of berseem clover and buckwheat, perhaps with a low population of phacelia, would give you the benefit of the roots in the ground but tops that would be killed off by the frost leaving just the winter wheat volunteers which could be sprayed off sometime in advance of drilling before they make too much top growth? Sometimes you have to try these things to be sure.
     
  14. rob1

    rob1 Member

    Location:
    wiltshire
    Yes the only way to know what works for you is to try it, I used up some various bits and bobs a couple of years ago in a part of a couple of fields, no benefit i could see, but if your om is lowish then i think there could be a benefit
     
  15. Fish

    Fish Member

    Location:
    North yorkshire
    The berseem clover, buckwheat, Phacelia mix is one we have grown for a few years, and as you say the clover and the buckwheat are very susceptible to frost, but I would not rely on frost to kill Phacelia.
     
  16. Brisel

    Brisel Member

    Location:
    Dorset
    Minus 4 here last week and most of my phacelia is still standing.

    Kyleo only works well in warmer temperatures. You'll need full rate to burn down big canopies. I did some at 2/3 dose last Feb to hit some big spear thistle and it had little effect in cold weather. Next time the wind drops I'll do mine with glyphosate plus carfentazone as a trial.

    Time helps - spray 6 weeks before you want to do anything and that will allow time for the biomass to break down. The cover crop isn't doing very much at this time of year anyway.
     
  17. Fish

    Fish Member

    Location:
    North yorkshire
    If we get a good hard frost, and it's a big if, I will go through ours with the rollers in an attempt to break the big stems and open the crop up, just need the frost.
     
  18. Gordon Greenlaw

    Gordon Greenlaw New Member

    Full rate Kyleo doesn't deliver enough glyphosate so you need to add another litre of 360 gm product to get the job done. .Even Nufarm admit that it needs more active to burn off a thick sward.
    The 2,4D part will be pretty useless when the temperature is in single figures.

    I guess that you have chosen carfentrazone as it has a pre-drilling recommendation.
    in the US and Canada they practice "burn down " to get rid of overwintered vegetation before drilling spring crops and they have a wider range of glyphosate co-forms and label approvals.
     
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  19. Simon Chiles

    Simon Chiles DD Moderator

    I had volunteer phacelia ( after I grew it as a seed crop ) that took a couple of -5c without any noticeable effect, the third frost ( a couple of weeks later ) which was only -2 absolutely nailed it.
     
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  20. Brisel

    Brisel Member

    Location:
    Dorset
    Kyleo is 240 g/litre glyphosate. "Normal" glyphosate is a third stronger. Yes, using carfentrazone because it's the only legal alternative to Kyleo for an extra added active ingredient.
     

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