Cultural methods to control black grass

Event Date : June 1, 2015

2nd field lab in series at Shimpling Park Farm, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP29 4HY

This field lab examines the approaches and experience that John Pawsey has had bringing sheep back onto his arable farm and the range of strategies available for dealing with a black grass problem. The Duchy Originals Future Farming Programme (DOFF) funded field trial, looking at the effect of grazing a winter wheat crop with sheep in the spring on black grass populations and crop yield will be demonstrated as one approach.

This field lab will demonstrate the results of the on-farm field trials whilst differences in black grass numbers are most obvious during flowering. Results from the trials so far will be presented and participants will be able to see differences in black grass populations in the field. A CTM Weed Surfer will also be demonstrated as another option for black grass control in cereal crops. Timing of using the machine and whether cut black grass seeds are viable will be discussed. John Pawsey will also talk about his experience of bringing sheep back into his rotation and how this will help with black grass on his farm.

1230 – Arrivals and light lunch
1300 – Introduction to field lab and the farm
1315 – Presentation of results so far from sheep grazing trial and other trials. (Nick Fradgley, ORC)
1330 – Demonstration of sheep grazing trial and crop trial plots.
1430 – Demo and discussion of weed surfer on black grass.
1530 – tea/coffee

See photos from first field lab here

More information here


Keep up to date with ORC updates and fundraising appeals

Be the first to hear about the latest organic and agroecological research and get tips to improve your success with organic farming and land management with the ORC e-bulletin. Delivered to your inbox monthly.

Newsletter signup

By submitting this form, you’re agreeing for us to contact you by email about our research, knowledge exchange, policy support and fundraising. Your details will only be used by the Organic Research Centre in adherence with our Privacy Policy.

You’re free to change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting our friendly Supporters Team at