the inside track
Due to the ongoing drought and therefore lack of growth, most growers have been negative towards ripening cane for the start of the season.
Most areas have received 100% of their LTM rainfall for the month of January; coupled with high temperatures growing conditions have been good, which bodes well for the efficacy of early season ripening. There are areas that have not been so lucky; we therefore do not recommend wall to wall ripening. We would rather suggest a targeted approach.
SASRI has developed one of the most useful tools for growers in the form of their purity calculator PurEst. This gives the farmer the opportunity to get an accurate estimate of his
PurEst will allow you to make educated decisions regarding ripening and allow you to prioritized which fields to be harvest first according to the capacity of a crop to produce more sugar.
A practical demonstration will be given at this year’s cane grower day to be held on the 9th of February 15:00 at the Dalton Agricultural Hall.
What a change to when I last reported. We have gone from battling for bark to an oversupply
Have you considered stripping two leaving two rows to be able to come back to these plantations later when it gets drier?
We remind you to attend our zonal report back meetings.
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ILLEGAL USE OF PRODUCTS CONTAINING PICHLORAM
The practice of using these chemicals as part of a full cover spray program in sugarcane to control wattle, bugweed and other broadleaf weeds is illegal. Recent events have necessitated a re-visit of this issue. Vegetable growers on the Sterkspruit in the New Hanover area have observed Picloram damage in their crops irrigated with water from the river.
Off label use of any agro chemical is an illegal practice. The ingredient Picloram is a persistent compound which has the potential to pollute rivers and underground water systems if used irresponsibly. Irresponsible use of these chemicals could result in litigation.
As part of the leading cane growing community in SA with regard to sustainability and environmental management I appeal to you all to take this issue very seriously and if you have been poorly advised to stop this practice with immediate effect.