With diquat no longer available (Northern Ireland or Republic of Ireland), Irish potato growers will have no option but to look at other crop desiccation options over the coming weeks. This issue was the focus of a farm demonstration, hosted by the College of Agriculture Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) at its Greenmount farm in Co. Antrim this week, which Agriland‘s Richard Halleron went along to.
CAFRE tillage advisor Leigh McClean confirmed the importance of effective desiccation as a potato crop management tool. He said: “The destruction of the haulm is important when it comes to controlling tuber size. This is particularly so for those farmers growing seed, salad potatoes or supplying supermarket contracts. …In the past sulphuric acid was used to desiccate potatoes with diquat, the last in the list of chemicals with a similar mode of action.”
With diquat out of the way, what are the desiccation options now open to Irish potato growers?
Source: Agriland. Read Richard Halleron’s article here