Take-all in winter wheat - management guidelines (HGCA Autumn 2006)

Cultivations

A firm seedbed discourages fungal growth. However, on heavy soils, over-compaction can hinder root growth and exacerbate the damaging effects of the fungus on root function.

Ploughing buries most of the take-all inoculum, which is in the top 10cm of soil at harvest, and brings less infective soil to the surface. This reduces early infection and gives the plant time to establish before its roots reach more infective soil. However, consolidation after ploughing is important to achieve a firm seedbed.

Minimum tillage of first wheat stubble leaves highly infective soil near the surface allowing a second wheat to be infected more rapidly but has the advantage that it leaves a firmer seedbed than ploughing.

Take-all in longer cereal sequences is not consistently affected by tillage method.

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