crop rotation

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sonnycbr

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crop rotation
« on: June 21, 2011, 19:02 »
Does anyone know if farmers practice crop rotation or do they rely on chemicals to prevent any build up of diseases? I see field after field of spuds in Scotland and they always seem to be in the same place.

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Springlands

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Re: crop rotation
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2011, 19:17 »
At a guess I would say that very few practice crop rotation - most farmers concentrate on one or two crops and all to meet the supermarkets and our expectations of cheap food. There are exceptions - say some of the organic farmers.

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mumofstig

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Re: crop rotation
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2011, 19:20 »
A lot of the spud fields in Scotland are growing seed potatoes for us to plant next year.
Because of their local conditions their stock is nearly always virus/disease free.
Quote
The Potato Council: The climatic characteristics of the region ensure that our seed potato production base is centred in one of Europe's most disease free regions. ...
Lesley x
I'm not good, I'm not bad - I'm just me, and sometimes I have to apologise for that ;)

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Salmo

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Re: crop rotation
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2011, 19:32 »
I would say that farmers follow crop rotation more now than 20 years ago when many of them were growing continuous cereals. Most farms now grow an alternative crop at least one year in three. On difficult clay soils this is often the yellow flowered oilseed rape. They also cultivate all the straw in instead of burning it.

Potatoes are grown no more than 1 year in 3 mainly to combat eelworm. This used to be enforced by DEFRA but it may be different now. The exception to that is some fields where very early potatoes are harvested before eelworm can develop. In Cornwall some south facing fields are cropped with early potatoes followed by spring caulis every year.

A common practice is to arrange for the same crops in the rotation to be in adjacent fields so that you will see huge blocks of the same crop. This makes field operations such as spraying and harvesting much more efficient as the machines are not moving from one area of the farm to another.

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Kleftiwallah

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Re: crop rotation
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2011, 19:35 »

Farmers rotate their crop depending on which has the highest subsidy !   :ohmy: Cheers,   Tony.
I may be growing OLD, but I refuse to grow UP !

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RichardA

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Re: crop rotation
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2011, 22:38 »
I walk my dogs along the edge of three fields in North Lincolnshire and have done for about 20 years. Rotation is almost 100% and goes peas, barley, oil seed rape and then back to peas. Occasionally sugar beet occurs but not often. Soil is thin with a lot of chalks and flints and whilst fields are large (one is almost 50 acres alone) they have steep sections. So yes at least one farmer does.
R



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