As I reflect on the 2013 sugarbeet season, I recognize that growers faced unique challenges from replanting to reduced sugar prices.
The increasing concern is how to meet your production goals and still have a profitable bottom line. At Syngenta we share your concern, and we are dedicated to helping develop solutions for you to achieve a healthier crop and grow more sugar.
We continue to develop disease-resistant Hilleshög varieties sturdy enough to do the heavy lifting and achieve strong stands. We hear your concerns and are working hard in research and development to develop varieties that address local challenges in each major sugarbeet-growing geography. We also offer our seed treatment with a replant program because we know Mother Nature can be unpredicatable, and we care about helping you control your production costs.
As planting approaches, I’ve put myself back in the shoes of a grower and considered the questions that I might ask myself as I prepare to get my seed in the ground. What management practices are essential to a high-yielding crop with good sugar quality? Where can I cut back on expenses? What products are worth my investment? The following are some thoughts I would keep in mind.
Essential management practices
It is important to keep field history in mind for the selected acreage so you can plan how to combat diseases that may remain in previous crop residue. Knowing field history is especially important when it comes to disease management, varietal selection and nitrogen management. For example, fields with a history of Rhizoctonia need a tolerant variety.
Test your soil. Accurate soil tests are needed to determine accurate nutrient levels. Every field will likely show varying results in terms of nutrients present in the soil, so soil testing will help identify the right fertility program and management needs to best fit each individual field.
Products worth the investment
Because young sugarbeet plants are vulnerable to pressures from pests and adverse weather conditions, experts recommend protecting crops with seed treatments like CruiserMaxx Sugarbeets insecticide/fungicide, which combines the power of Maxim 45S and Apron XL fungicides with Cruiser 5FS insecticide to provide early-season disease and insect protection from a broad range of pests, including Rhizoctonia, Pythium, sugarbeet root maggot, wireworm and root aphid.
Proper planting and pest management can help provide growers with the best chance for season-long success. In addition to following best practices and monitoring fields, speak with local seed agents and agronomists who can provide recommendations about timely crop management to help sugarbeets establish a solid start. Best wishes on a successful 2014 sugarbeet growing season!