13 May 2014
Agroforestry and Biodiversity

Farm Woodland Forum annual meeting

29 May 2014
Soil Association National Livestock Event

The Soil Association and The Woodland Trust event in Gloucestershire



18 April 2014
Tenancy opportunity at Dartington

Opportunity to take on a pioneering farm on Dartington Hall estate

16 April 2014
Sustainability of a small-scale organic vegetable supply system

Market garden and box scheme compared with supermarket distribution



11 March 2014
Agroforestry letter to Defra

26 organisations call for Defra to back agroforestry

New approaches to weed control in oilseed rape

Contract period:

1 August 2009 to 28 February 2013

Main funder:

HGCA

Contact staff at ORC:

Dr. Thomas Döring

Project aims

Overall aim: To evaluate new approaches to weed control in winter oilseed rape that use carefully-directed control methods between crop rows to minimise reliance on commonly-used selective residual herbicides.

Specific objectives:

  1. Determine the effectiveness of a technique based on a simple repositioning (and twisting) of conventional nozzles set at an angle to the spray boom and at a low boom height, to apply a non selective (or non crop-safe) herbicide between the crop rows.
  2. Evaluate the impact of combining directed non-selective treatments between crop rows with directed selective treatments applied over the crop rows.
  3. Evaluate the use of a shrouded inter-row CDA applicator for delivering the non-selective herbicide between crop rows.
  4. Examine the scope for non-chemical control in the inter-rows using a guided mechanical hoe.
  5. Assess the potential for vehicle guidance systems (RTK DGPS or vision based) to improve the accuracy and effectiveness of inter-row treatments.
  6. Study the effect of row spacing on the balance between maintaining a crop that is competitive against weeds and the effectiveness and practicality of inter-row treatments.
  7. Evaluate the cost effectiveness of the different approaches in relation to herbicide use, weed control and crop performance.

ORC's role

ORC conducts field experiments on mechanical weed control in oil seed rape.

Project leader and partners

Research partners
The Arable Group (NIAB-TAG)
Scottish Agricultural College (SAC)
Tillet and Hague Technology

Industry partners
Monsanto
Micron
John Deere
Garford