Do you want to Beat Brome?

Do you have a problem with brome on your farm?  Are you interested in getting involved with a group of likeminded farmers and agronomists to help solve your problem?

As part of the AHDB-funded project ‘Investigating the distribution and presence, and potential for herbicide resistance of UK brome species in arable farming’, at ADAS we are setting up an Innovative Farmers field lab on Brome.

Bromes are highly competitive weeds, with infestations of sterile brome with populations as low as 5 plants/m² causing up to a 5% yield loss. As part of the project our survey has shown that sterile brome is the 2nd most problematic grass weed in the UK, after black-grass. Brome is not just a problem of the North and the West as previously thought, all species are widespread in arable areas as this map shows.

Experimental work within the four-year research programme will provide information on the potential for herbicide resistance evolution in UK brome weeds and identify methods to help slow or prevent resistance evolution of these grasses.

We also want to find out what works best in the field

We still lack information on brome species; particularly when they emerge in the field, what species are present and where in the field they are located. Understanding the weed will help us target the weaknesses in its lifecycle and improve cultural control. We want to know what has been tried and what is currently working for you.

We plan to have an initial meeting in June or July and present the results we have so far.  Hopefully our discussions will develop a plan for further on-farm research on aspects of control that are of concern for group members, these may include increasing the seed rate, using competitive crops such as hybrid barley, optimising the use of spring cropping, ploughing and headland management.

Would you be interested in sharing your experience of brome, and how you manage the weed? Register your interest on sarah.cook@adas.co.uk or call for more details on 01954 268215.

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