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Achieve more from growing

spring barley

CONTENTS Know your market


Maximise marketability


Optimise output


Target correct grain protein


Protect specific weight


Watch for split and skinned grains


Examples of spring barley varieties by end market


Establishment and Seedcare™


Managing grass weeds in spring barley


Dose rates and timings


Controlling disease


Cebara or Bontima: Suggested dose rates


Managing the roots and canopy


Harvest and storage


Introduction Whether you’re growing for malting or feed, the rewards of achieving yield and quality can be well worth the effort with spring barley. That’s particularly the case when there’s a good grain price. But also if we’re in a competitive market – the likes of which we could have in 2013, with a larger than average area of spring barley planted this season. So buyers could have plenty to choose from, and achieving maximum yield and quality potential will be key. Even if the crop is being grown in place of winter wheat this season, don’t let attention to detail slip. Good crop husbandry – e.g. from establishment through to weed and disease control, canopy and harvest management – will pay dividends.


Know your market

Now, the new variety GLASSEL is also being targeted at distilling by Syngenta, and has recently been added to the HGCA Recommended List.

As a first step with spring barley, identify clearly which end market you are growing for – whether UK brewing or export brewing, distilling or feed. Not least this is so that once you have chosen varieties, you grow them in the most appropriate way. Check with your selling point the most likely market for the variety you are growing - growing varieties that appeal to the UK end market but also to mainland Europe can be an extremely important consideration.

Maximise marketability If you are selling your barley, making it an attractive proposition to buyers is key. For brewing, growing a pan-European variety could mean you have more than one option when it comes to end markets – particularly if parts of Europe have a poor harvest and need to import.

Optimise output

As well as being popular in the UK, the brewing varieties NFC TIPPLE, QUENCH and PROPINO have proved very popular across Europe.

Once you’ve chosen your market and variety, consider its yield. Even with a malting crop, yield can make a big difference. The new malting variety SANETTE, for example, has set a new standard for yield on the HGCA Recommended List.

In addition, the new variety SANETTE, as well as being targeted at UK brewing, also has good lager characteristics for Europe, and could be another potential pan-European option. So there is plenty of choice.

Also, whether you are selling your straw or using it on-farm, don’t overlook its value too. The feed variety WAGGON has relatively short straw, but trials have shown that it is still a very high straw producer.

Meanwhile in the distilling sector, as countries such as India, China and Russia have acquired a taste for whisky; this market has become more buoyant. OPTIC has served the distilling market extremely well. It maintains its full approval for malt distilling (and brewing) use on the Institute of Brewing and Distilling (IBD) approved list for harvest 2013 and, importantly, has produced very consistent quality, even in some difficult seasons.


Target correct grain protein Importantly with malting barley, have a plan to achieve the correct grain proteins for your target end market. Grain protein can be influenced by a number of factors – such as season, land type, drilling date, rotational position and inputs. For example, high-yielding situations can mean grain protein content is diluted. Alternatively, increasing nitrogen rates can increase grain protein and yield, but over-applying could lead to grain protein becoming too high, as well as increasing screenings.

Additionally, the optimum nitrogen rate (and timing) can vary depending on variety. So check individual variety guidelines in relation to end markets, and take any necessary advice, which can be found on our website As an example, grain nitrogen levels in PROPINO are typically between those of OPTIC and NFC TIPPLE, and Syngenta nitrogen input trials have shown the following effects:

Effect of nitrogen timing on yield and grain N of PROPINO 9.40 1.80 9.20 1.75 1.70 1.65




1.55 8.40 1.50 8.20 0


50% GS11 - 50% GS15 Propino Yield

50% GS15 - 50% GS28

25% GS11 - 75% GS15

Propino Grain N %

75% GS15 - 25% GS28

Source: Syngenta Seeds Trials, harvest 2009-11 1st App - GS11, 2nd app - GS15, 3rd app - GS28 Total application made: 120kg/ha



Grain N %

Yield t/ha


Protect specific weight

Watch for split and skinned grains

Whether growing for malting or feed, if you are selling spring barley grain, producing good specific weights and low screenings are key. As well as variety choice, disease control can have a big part to play – since maintaining green leaf area also helps to maintain the plant’s capacity for grain-filling. So effective disease prevention can be key. See page 9.

Split or skinned grains can cause real headaches for end users, and lead to sample rejection or loss of premium for growers. Split and skinned grains can produce variable rates of water uptake during malting, which results in an uneven final product that increases production time for the brewer or distiller. Unfortunately, these factors can be difficult to manage and very season dependent. However, varieties with a track record of resisting them may help. OPTIC has produced good results in preventing splitting and skinned grains, in addition careful combine set up will help avoid damage to grain during harvest.


Examples of spring barley varieties by end market

Brewing-targeted varieties Popular in the UK and also has wide pan-European acceptance, and is well-proven on farm. Has Full Approval for brewing from the Institute of Brewing and Distilling (IBD), and offers excellent processability to end users. Full IBD Approval for brewing use, good UK treated yield on the HGCA Recommended List, and very popular in Europe. As with NFC Tipple, pan-European acceptance can allow access to export markets. Also has high Rhynchosporium resistance. Another key variety that has grown in popularity. High yielding and with Full IBD Approval for brewing use. As well as UK interest, it is commercially accepted in multiple European countries. Early maturing and offers similar benefits to NFC Tipple, but with improved Rhynchosporium resistance. The next potential pan-European brewing variety from Syngenta. Outstanding UK treated yield on the HGCA Recommended List of spring barley 2013 – at 109%. Also has good lager characteristics for Europe.

Distilling-targeted varieties Tried and trusted variety that has remained a popular malting choice in Scotland. Regularly turns in good quality – even in the difficult season of 2012 – with good resistance to splitting, skinning and pre-germination. Has Full IBD approval for malt distilling (and brewing) use. New non-GN variety from Syngenta that could provide a future new option for malt distilling. UK treated yield of 103% on the HGCA Recommended List, which it has consistently produced over the last three harvests. Glassel has excellent resistance to brackling plus good resistance to mildew.

New variety SANETTE


Establishment and Seedcare™

Giving crops the best possible start with good establishment can be crucial with spring barley.

Key steps • Drill at the correct time - Drilling into a good seedbed is important - Sow only once you can prepare a fine, firm, free-draining seedbed which is easily worked and is free from smearing or capping

- Forced or poor seedbeds increase the risk of plant losses and may reduce quality

- Check the variety’s optimum drilling date

- Excessively late drilling can reduce yield and increase grain nitrogen

• Use correct seed rates

- Varieties can differ in optimum seed rates, e.g. some have different growth habits

- Therefore, assess seed rates according to individual variety needs

-T  his may then need fine-tuning according to sowing conditions, to counter any potential plant loss due to pests, drilling date, slugs etc.

- Excessive seed rates may increase yield but could also increase screenings

• Protect with a suitable seed treatment - Seed and soil-borne pathogens can reduce yield and quality

- Protecting seed with a quality seed treatment can provide excellent control of key diseases

- Key seed and soil-borne diseases of barley:

» Loose smut (Ustilago nuda)

» Seedling blights (eg Microdochium nivale and Fusarium graminearum)

» Leaf stripe (Pyrenophora graminea)

» Covered smut (Ustilago hordei)


Wireworm BERET MULTI, a product of Syngenta’s Seedcare™ portfolio, is specifically developed for barley. It is based on the active ingredients fludioxonil (for excellent control of seedling blights which can hinder crop establishment) and flutriafol (to enhance the spectrum of activity to include leaf stripe and loose smut). In addition, the novel Formula M formulation technology has been designed to provide treatments with excellent flowability in the drill, with low dust and rapid seed emergence.

If planting spring barley in situations where wireworm could be a problem (e.g. where a spring crop follows a grass ley or arable crops where grass weeds have been common), consider AUSTRAL PLUS seed treatment. It combines fludioxonil, with the insecticide tefluthrin which is slowly released to provide a zone of protection around the treated seed.

Managing grass weeds in spring barley Controlling grass weeds effectively in spring barley can be vital to reduce their competitive effect against the crop and reduce seed build-up for future years. Weeds such as wild oats can cause many of the pitfalls listed below. With its powerful ‘den’ chemistry against weeds such as wild oats and rye-grass, AXIAL has provided a new standard for grass weed control in barley.

Pitfalls of poor grass weed control • Yield losses • Weed seed return • Harvesting delays • Contaminated grain samples • Losses or reduction in premium • Rejected grain • Additional drying costs

Grass weeds can cause many problems


• Ideal solution for post-emergence spring grass weed control • Key weeds: - Wild oats, Italian rye-grass and perennial rye-grass (from seed)

- Black-grass in winter and spring barley as part of an integrated programme e.g. following a pre-emergence treatment

• Trials also show activity against rough stalked meadow-grass, onion couch and loose silky bent • Fast and effective results thanks to:

- Efficient re-distribution around wild oats

- Flexible dose according to weed size

- Rainfast in 1 hour

• Always use AXIAL with ADIGOR adjuvant (1% of spray volume when using less than 200 l/ha of water)

Other benefits of AXIAL: Highly effective against wild oats and rye-grass

One product for wheat and barley

One product for both wild oats and rye-grass



Convenient Wide application window No rotational restrictions or autumn ploughing

Use after FOP, DIM, ALS


Fewer products - fewer packs, less time

Most effective wild oat and rye-grass product

Excellent performance in drier conditions

Performs in cool conditions

AXIAL: dose rates and timings

Black-grass management opportunity Where spring barley is being grown instead of winter wheat this season, its later drilling date could provide a valuable opportunity for breaking the black-grass autumn/winter germination cycle, helping with long-term control. To achieve the greatest benefit, ensure any black-grass that does threaten the spring barley crop is adequately removed with cultural methods and a combined programme of pre- and postemergence herbicide sprays. Usefully, AXIAL can also be used against black-grass in barley as part of a programme. Black-grass management in spring barley • Start with pre-emergence herbicide • Follow with AXIAL 0.6 l/ha when black-grass at 2 leaves • Use 1% ADIGOR – i.e. 1 litre in 100 l/ha • Use DEFY or HAWK angled nozzles in open crops


Controlling disease Effective disease control can be key to unlocking yield and quality. In 2012 the HGCA spring barley fungicide yield response was +1.5 t/ha. Both yield and quality can become even more important in seasons when buyers have a lot of barley to choose from, with extra yield also becoming more worthwhile as grain prices increase.

Having sufficient fertile tiller numbers to produce the optimum number of ears per square metre provides the foundation for barley yield. It is therefore important to protect these by creating a disease-free, healthy canopy early on. Later, it becomes important to protect grain-filling by maintaining this clean and green canopy as the season progresses. Specialist SDHI fungicide chemistry has brought an important step forward for the barley crop.

Key points • Disease is a key cause of yield and quality loss. • Changes in the sensitivity of some barley diseases to strobilurins and triazoles have historically been seen, so it is important to utilise other chemistry to ensure optimum performance. • As well as ‘traditional’ diseases, Ramularia and abiotic spotting affect wide areas of the UK.

How CEBARA and BONTIMA can help Purpose-designed for barley, CEBARA and BONTIMA offer a simple, powerful solution to protect against a range of barley diseases – in a way that is triazole and strobilurin-free, to minimise resistance risk.

Consider these factors in your fungicide choice


Cebara • New-generation SDHI fungicide for use in spring and winter barley • Contains no strobilurin or triazole but combines the SDHI fungicide IZM (isopyrazam) with the proven performance of cyprodinil – for an alternative to repeated triazole use • Has produced: - Exceptionally clean crops

- Long-lasting green leaf area

- Repeatedly higher yield and quality

• Has given benefits over old chemistry, and provides a good SDHI dose for the money • Excellent performance as a standalone product, but also has the flexibility to mix in prothioconazole in highly curative Rhynchosporium situations Trials have shown good control of a broad range of diseases in barley.




Simple, powerful and reliable disease control Mildew

Brown Rust

Net blotch


Cebara or Bontima: Suggested dose rates


Moderate yield potential T1 and T2

High yield potential T1 and T2

1.25-1.4 l/ha

1.4 l/ha

• In curative (Rhynchosporium) situations increase the rates above by up to 25% OR mix prothioconazole e.g. CEBARA or BONTIMA 1.0 + 0.25 prothioconazole • Under high Ramularia pressure consider addition of BRAVO at T2 for resistance management CEBARA and BONTIMA deliver outstanding yield Yield t/ha

10 8.78

9 8 7


7.93 7.48


6 5 4 3 2 1 0



Isopyrazam/ cyprodinil 1.6


Isopyrazam/ cyprodinil 1.2 + prothioconazole 0.3

Data Source: Crop Research Ltd, Ireland Variety: Quench Application: T1 and T2


Prothioconazole/ fluoxastrobin 1.0

Bixafen/ prothioconazole 0.75

Managing the roots and canopy Spring barley crops may benefit from various forms of canopy management depending on how they are developing. For example, a PGR applied early in the season may aid rooting.

Check crop growth carefully, and consider PGR options. MODDUS is approved for spring barley use.

Improve rooting

Manage lodging

• For better access to moisture • For better nutrient scavenging • For better root anchorage

Lodging risks: • If pushing for yield • In early-drilled and/or lush crops • If soil N levels are high (e.g. after a root crop)

MODDUS 0.2 l/ha up to GS30

MODDUS 0.2 l/ha GS31/32

MODDUS should only be applied to actively growing, non-stressed crops.

Harvest and storage • Harvest on time Leaving the harvesting of crops too late may result in pre-germination or even heads being shed. Also, some varieties may be ready for harvesting while ears remain upright, so check crops carefully, rather than simply relying on visible ‘ear angle’.

• Use correct combine set-up Check combine set-up and consider adjusting to avoid grain damage, such as split grains, which could result in  loss of premium or sample rejection.

• Keep varieties separate Segregate varieties in store. Mixing could affect saleability. • Dry correctly and store at correct moisture Malting barley may lose germination power if stored at too high a moisture level. Longer storage may require grain to  be dried down further. Monitor crops frequently during storage and be aware of moisture levels that buyers require.

• Use correct storage temperature Unsuitable temperatures may encourage attack by mould and pests as well as germination decline.  13

Syngenta UK Ltd. Registered in England No. 849037. CPC4, Capital Park, Fulbourn, Cambridge CB21 5XE Tel: 01223 883400 Fax: 01223 882195 Technical Enquiries Tel: 0800 169 6058 E-mail: Website: ADIGOR®, AUSTRAL PLUS®, AXIAL®, BERET MULTI®, BONTIMA®, BRAVO® CEBARA®, DEFY® and MODDUS® are Registered trademarks of a Syngenta Group Company. ADIGOR® (MAPP No. ADJ 0522) contains methylated rapeseed oil. AUSTRAL PLUS® (MAPP No. 13314) contains fludioxonil and tefluthrin. AXIAL® (MAPP No. 12521) contains pinoxaden and cloquintocet-mexyl. BERET MULTI® (MAPP No. 13017) contains fludioxonil and flutriafol. BONTIMA (MAPP No. 14899) contains cyprodinil and isopyrazam. BRAVO® (MAPP No. 14548) contains chlorothalonil. CEBARA® (MAPP No. 16035) contains cyprodinil and isopyrazam. DEFY® (MAPP No. 12606) contains prosulfocarb. MODDUS (MAPP No. 15151) contains trinexapac-ethyl. All other brand names used are Trademarks of other manufacturers in which proprietary rights may exist. Use plant protection products safely. Always read the label and product information before use. For further product information including warning phrases and symbols refer to © Syngenta AG April 2013. GQ03972.

Spring Barley Guide  

Achieve more from growing spring barley.

Spring Barley Guide  

Achieve more from growing spring barley.