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Canola grazing an excellent option with SALTRO® DUO

Broadacre
25.02.2021

Farmers and advisors now have a seed treatment option they can readily use in canola rotations, including dual purpose crops where growers have previously had to sacrifice early disease control.

Entering just its second season SALTRO DUO® is compatible with relatively early grazing, helping growers bridge the gap in winter pasture growth, while protecting emerging crops from blackleg, rhizoctonia and Pythium.

Several other seed treatments diminish the usefulness of early grazing with longer withholding periods while offering even less in the way of disease protection.

AGnVET Senior Agronomist Nathan Soulsby is based in Henty and has noted increased interest in SALTRO DUO through paddock planning in January and February.

“In 2020 we saw quite a bit of blackleg and there’s even more now with the stubble load from last year,” he said.

“Because we have so much blackleg, it hasn’t been a hard decision for growers to move across to SALTRO DUO this year and it’s great to see new products like this coming through, providing better options. It’s just been Jockey® for a long time.”

Mr Soulsby said there was a marked difference between the market standard Jockey Stayer and SALTRO DUO.

“We had some SALTRO DUO side by side with Jockey Stayer and there was a distinct line between them. The SALTRO DUO treated plants were happier, the vigour difference was really noticeable.

“We’ve seen big yield penalties in delayed emergence where canola’s not up and away by Anzac Day or early May, when it can turn cold really quickly, the affect is noticeable at harvest,” he said.

For many, canola is being planted as an earlier option and growers are utilising the extra growth and vigour from the crop to feed sheep and cattle.

It is a particularly useful option as an interim grazing source as growers wait for their grazing cereals or pastures to become available.

Grazing canola has had some challenges in recent years with several seed treatments having longer-term restrictions on livestock grazing under certain situations.

This is not the case with SALTRO DUO, since it has emerged as the preferable seed treatment under various scenarios, with added flexibility for growers considering grazing opportunities.

AGnVET customer Damien Schneider, Culcairn, used SALTRO DUO as a seed treatment on his canola last season and was able to graze lambs on the crop eight weeks after sowing.

He said the crop was clean of disease throughout the early stages and provided valuable feed. 

“It could be two or three months after you’ve started grazing before you have the ability to do another disease spray,” he said.  “You definitely want that longevity.  To go right through until flowering is a great asset, particularly when it comes to the profit bottom line.”

SALTRO DUO provides excellent control of canola seedling blackleg, rhizoctonia and Pythium and is a combination of Syngenta’s new, unique SDHI fungicide SALTRO and the recognised high performer MAXIM® XL.

It targets the key control period from the cotyledons to the four to six leaf stage to stop Blackleg infections that leads to stem cankering.

SALTRO DUO is particularly effective against blackleg, the major disease of concern to Australian canola growers, but it also has efficacy on rhizoctonia and Pythium.

Both diseases cause damage when conditions are less than ideal early in the season.  Problems can occur when seed is sown dry close to the autumn break or if weather conditions become cool or damp.

“The broader spectrum of SALTRO DUO, compared to other seed treatments available, provides an opportunity to control all three key diseases and give the canola the best possible start,” Syngenta Technical Services Lead Sean Roberts said.

“This leads to healthier cotyledons and a reduction in disease infections later in the season.”

Multiple trials have demonstrated the higher crop yields compared to untreated crops and the market standard Jockey Stayer® seed treatment.

“Across 23 trials - spanning WA, SA, VIC and NSW - SALTRO DUO contributed to significantly higher yields compared to crops using the commercial standard Jockey Stayer,” Mr Roberts said. “The crops established with SALTRO DUO treated seed were far and away better than the untreated crops.”

While the main aim of SALTRO DUO is to promote healthier, disease-free plants to produce higher yields, there has also been work undertaken to ensure the product does not have any adverse effects on seed germination.

Syngenta has conducted multiple tests to ensure there aren’t any negative crop and seed safety issues with SALTRO DUO applied to canola seed.

Studies conducted at The Seedcare Institute™ Wagga Wagga assessed the hypocotyl length using cold and cool vigour testing methodology. The tests demonstrated there wasn’t any negative effect on crop safety.

Some other seed treatments tested showed a reduction in the hypocotyl length leading to some concerns about the impact on crop safety. 

Seed safety trials were also conducted at The Seedcare Institute. Long-term results demonstrated no negative effect on stored seed treated with SALTRO DUO.

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