Some farmers may be considering planting maize for the 2022 season.
Maize is an expensive crop to grow, given the fertiliser requirement and use of plastic.
Therefore, it is important to get the basics right when planting maize.
The soil pH should be at 6.5, while ideally P and K levels will be at index 3. The site needs to be free-draining, ideally south-facing and sheltered. If you think about maize, it is a tropical crop and so needs heat and shelter.
Plastic will help to warm up the seedbed and protect the crop from frost before it breaks through.
Crops planted without plastic should also be early-maturing
Varieties need to be considered carefully, particularly where the site is not ideally suited to maize. For example, crops planted on a suitable site are suited to early- and late-maturing varieties.
However, crops planted on a marginal site need to be early-maturing. Crops planted without plastic should also be early-maturing.
Ambition remains a solid variety whether covered or uncovered.
Ambition has a relative dry matter yield of 87 when covered and is an early-maturing variety. Its relative yield is 105 when uncovered according to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s recommended lists.
Retailers who had the plastic in stock before the ban came into effect can also sell that stock
Farmers can use oxo-degradable plastic this season.
They can use up stocks of the product following a ban on single-use plastics in the EU on 3 July, 2021.
Retailers who had the plastic in stock before the ban came into effect can also sell that stock.
The industry is currently working on bringing alternative products to market and has products there at present which are described as compostable.
These products have not been trialled by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and no recommended list trials of varieties planted with a cover will be carried out in 2022.