Frontier Agriculture set to host open days at Honingham Thorpe trials site

Frontier Agriculture's trials site at Honingham Thorpe Farms. Pictured is agronomist Emily Page.

Frontier Agriculture's trials site at Honingham Thorpe Farms. Pictured is agronomist Emily Page. - Credit: Archant

Arable growers can explore the latest research into crop varieties, protection and nutrition at two pre-harvest open days at a working farm next month.

Frontier Agriculture's trials site at Honingham Thorpe Farms. Pictured is agronomist Emily Page and

Frontier Agriculture's trials site at Honingham Thorpe Farms. Pictured is agronomist Emily Page and regional agronomy sales manager Andrew Melton. - Credit: Archant

Frontier Agriculture, one of the country's largest crop inputs and grain marketing businesses, is in its second year of trials in partnership with Honingham Thorpe Farms, west of Norwich.

The farm will host two free open days from 5pm to 8pm on July 4 and July 6, giving visitors the chance to compare the performance of crop varieties and see trials of fungicides and granular and foliar nutrition products.

Experts on hand to explain the results will include Paul Brown talking about winter wheat varieties, Dr Paul Fogg discussing fungicide trials and Ed Downing on nutrition.

Meanwhile equipment suppliers including Ben Burgess, Thurlow Nunn Standen and Ernest Doe will bring the latest machinery cultivation equipment.


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Frontier agronomist Emily Page said: 'What we want to is give a summary of the season we have gone through so far, and give people food for thought for next season in terms of what varieties to grow. It is a good get-together before harvest and we have drafted in lots of experts.

'We will also be looking at the commodity markets, so as well as the agronomics of new varieties, we will also look at the markets for it.'

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Miss Page said one key piece of advice had emerged during the current hot and dry weather.

'I think what we have learned from this year is that although it appears really dry, there is no reason to ease up on your fungicide programmes,' she said. 'There is still a risk of brown rust and fusarium, so if there is any late rain the plant is exposed if you have given up on your fungicides at the final hurdle.'

The results of the trials at Honingham Thorpe will be set in context against data from an in-field weather station, while a spore trap has been collecting spores every day which are analysed by FERA (the Food and Environment Research Agency) to help monitor the presence of diseases.

Andrew Melton, regional agronomy sales manager for Frontier, said: 'One of the key reasons why people should come here is we are very fortunate to have replicated trials and demonstrations at a commercial farm on your doorstep in Norfolk.

'You can see why people would want to cut their input costs, but when you are looking at variable costs like nutrition or fungicides, a robust targeted programme will pay dividends. There are a myriad of things we can do to keep plants healthy, by looking at different crops, the impact of different cultivations and rotations, and the interaction between fungicides and foliar nutrients.'

To register to attend the free events, contact hannah.taylor1@frontierag.co.uk.

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