The continued wet weather has wreaked havoc across most of the UK, and in Buckinghamshire the challenges growers are facing as a result are two-fold, according to Agrii agronomist, Greg Taylor. “We’ve got two situations to deal with here. Firstly, the crops that did get drilled in the autumn have been sat in wet conditions for quite some time and aren’t looking particularly happy.

“Then we’ve got the fact that there’s still a huge area that’s undrilled and the ground conditions are looking pretty poor at the moment.”

With poor conditions a consistent theme in both scenarios, Greg says he will be including the adjuvant Backrow within his recommendations this year. “I mainly use Backrow with pre-emergence herbicides. In a normal year, most crop establishment would be in the winter and so I mostly mix it with key autumn pre-ems. However, this year, I’ll be looking to target crops in the spring.”

In terms of the physical benefits, Greg says the key features of Backrow are improved spray pattern – leading to even, accurate ground coverage – and also better adhesion of the herbicide to the soil.

But Backrow’s benefits go beyond what the eye can see, he adds. “There’s also the element of crop safety that it brings.”

Greg says that in his experience, there’s often around a 5% gain in terms of the efficacy of pre-emergence residual herbicides when used in combination with Backrow. “This is obviously great for crop safety and resistance management, but also has a real benefit financially.

“If you consider it in terms of cost and investment, growers are getting so much more financially by using Backrow, rather than stacking another herbicide.

“When you stack herbicides, you probably get about 60% control from the first one and then an additional 10% per product on top. If you then take into consideration that these herbicides range from anywhere between £35-£55 per product – but only gives you an additional 10% control – then it’s a no-brainer. Backrow is so much more cost effective.”

In the case of blackgrass, this cost-effective control really comes into its own, adds Greg. “When dealing with blackgrass, you need a minimum of 98% control – having those extra percent from Backrow really helps you get there. In my opinion, Backrow is a huge leap forward in innovation for safeguarding both products and crops.”

If, and when, crops do get going this spring, Greg says he’ll be looking to use another adjuvant – Kantor – at T2/T3 timings because result of their fungicide-boosting capabilities.

“I’ve noticed that rainfastness is reduced down to 15 minutes when using Kantor,” he explains. “The primary benefit of this is that if you do get caught out with the rain, it protects you.”

According to Greg, this rainfastness became apparent to him when using the product to improve spray pattern. “Later on in the crop growth – when the leaves start coming out – leaves start to cover the stem, meaning issues like brown rust are shielded from the spray. However, Kantor seems to enable fungicides to reach those difficult areas. It’s a great attribute of the product.”