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What’s the impact of removing straw?

While rain has now fallen in most regions, the recent hot weather has significantly impacted grass growth meaning, unfortunately, many dairy farmers will be heading into the winter with a shortage of silage. As has been well publicised over recent weeks, many farmers are baling their straw to help their colleagues with cattle. But what impact does ...

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Should I be variably drilling my oilseed rape?

This is a question I am often asked when discussing plans with growers and my most common response is, "Why wouldn't you?" For me, as with any crop, it makes perfect sense to adopt variable rate drilling for OSR. Particularly for helping to create the optimum, even canopy as the correct seed rate can hugely contribute to this. Optimum canopies Toda...

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Correcting your soil pH

Sitting here on a Friday, surrounded by colleagues taking calls from lime contractors across the UK, I thought it would be worthwhile to address the importance of correcting your pH. With the earlier harvest, land being clear and the need for some rain before OSR cultivations can really begin in many areas of the UK, there's a good opportunity for ...

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PK timings

As customers get the combines out, some are also turning their thoughts towards next season and what will need doing for the new crop. Cropping plans are starting to roll in to the Applications Team inbox so fertiliser can be ordered in the hope of a good harvest and drilling conditions, allowing for an autumn application of phosphate and potash (P...

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Target applications to maximise protein %

In what has been a challenging spring for many farmers across the UK, winter wheat crops have come out of it looking well and the potential in many areas is good. The challenge now is to ensure that you help your crops reach the best condition they possibly can over the coming months. AHDB figures tell us that over the last twelve years only 27% of...

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Weed mapping

Weed mapping has been around, in various guises, for some time. For example, it might be in real-time by identifying weeds in the field and directing a spray nozzle during application. Or it could be based upon creating maps of weed infestations ahead of application. Application technology will get more accurate and, if we allow our minds to wander...

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The life of a precision applications advisor

The weather has improved lately and workload for growers and advisors has increased. I am a relatively new member of the crop applications team at SOYL precision and I thought I'd share some insight into our role and how we support farmers. The crop applications team - what we do to support farmers: We create fertiliser recommendations for over one...

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Over-winter nitrogen losses and spring N levels

SOYL have undertaken a nitrogen sampling project at a number of sites across the UK. These sites had a range of differing soil types, allowing us to assess over-winter changes in soil nitrogen levels. A comparison of nitrogen levels in March, compared with those measured in November, has shown a significant over-winter loss, averaging 50kg/ha N or ...

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Technological innovations

Well, the winter workshop campaign has finished for another year and was hugely successful – it is always a pleasure to tour the country seeing our customers. At the workshops, I talked about what we have been developing at SOYL over the last year, as well as how and why farmers should be using these innovations within their businesses. Importance ...

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Variable rate plant growth regulators (PGRs)

SOYL have been conducting trials using variable rate plant growth regulators (PGRs) on both winter oilseed rape and winter wheat. The premise for variable applications on both crops is the same – that there will be a yield benefit from applying a full rate of PGR on crops that are at risk from lodging because of over-large canopies. However, if the...

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Precision farming and grassland

Over the past few seasons, SOYL has been developing precision farming services for the grassland industry. Grass is the UK's largest crop and is grown in every county. A particular area that became a focus was that of pasture management and we discussed this during our winter workshops. A grassland and livestock famer needs to make constant decisio...

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Compatible iPads for iSOYL

It is always the first question we get asked when it comes to customer iPads – is mine compatible when it comes to variable rate? It's easy to assume that "an iPad is an iPad, so it will just work" but unfortunately this is not always the case. Some iPads only have wifi capabilities as opposed to 4G data, while others may not have a GPS module insi...

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SOYL to conduct UK's largest variable rate nitrogen trial

Please click here to visit the SOYL website For those of you who have visited one of our Winter Workshops you will have heard about our launch of the largest ever variable rate nitrogen trial. Here at SOYL we have recognised that an area of huge potential in precision farming is the ability to carry out on-farm trials. While it not only aids ongoin...

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Get a precise focus on your EFAs

Changes are ahead for Ecological Focus Areas (EFAs). However, by taking a more precise approach to tailor the farm areas allocated to EFAs and choosing longer term crop options, they still represent a fantastic opportunity to improve biodiversity and the farm's bottom line. EFAs have hit the headlines due to the imminent removal of the use of Plant...

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Why should I be digitally recording on-farm data?

Over the coming winter months I will be talking to hundreds of UK farmers about SOYL's Precision Farming application, MySOYL, and other associated in-field apps. Many will likely wonder what value there is in recording what they see on farm in an app and have this data synced to a central place. Our field-walking app, iSOYLscout, does exactly this ...

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Data analysis comes alive at this year's workshops

A few clients have asked me what to expect at this year's SOYL winter workshops. You can find a general overview in this article but as the team finalise their slide decks, I'm starting to see a very clear theme: Data. There's been a lot of talk about data in recent years and we're now starting to see very positive learnings by analysing complex pr...

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Why and how would you do your own late-November plant counts?

During germination a proportion of viable seeds can fail to emerge due to pests, diseases and soil conditions, impacting the total viable plants in the spring. Conversely, too high a plant population can increase canopy size (GAI) and reduce the ability of individual plants to compete for light and resources, meaning there will be fewer grains on e...

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Have you considered correcting your pH with lime?

We experience many different scenarios during the farming year while providing support and files to over 100 lime contractors from across the UK. After what has been a very hectic few weeks dealing with lime contractors desperate to get onto clear land, I thought it would be worth writing a short blog on liming and things to consider when it comes ...

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Managing establishment

The establishment of crops is measured by the percentage of seeds that result in a viable crop. For example, what would be considered the 'good' part of a field might establish at 90%, whereas a 'poor' part may only establish at 50%.SOYL customers have access to several tools designed to aid with managing crop establishment, as well as lots of info...

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Variable rate drilling to reach field potential

With harvest winding up and drilling beginning it seems timely to share how I use a number of precision tools to create the 'Rolls Royce' of drilling plans - using variable rate seed to give each field the capacity to reach its full potential. For a long time farmers have 'manually' adjusted seed rates in poorer performing areas of the field on an ...

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  3058 Hits

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