Strategic Centre for Field Vegetables - Carrots

Tim Hardstaff
Hall Farm, Linby
Farm sectors:
View on Google Maps

About Strategic Centre for Field Vegetables - Carrots

  • The Strategic Centres for Field Vegetables showcased the latest ideas, research and technology to improve integrated pest management (IPM) strategies
  • The Strategic Centre nework had centres with demonstration sites around the UK, which focused on four key crops; carrots, peasonions and brassicas
  • The Strategic Centres for Field Vegetables built on the success of AHDB’s variety trial programme, by expanding to incorporate grower-led research trials.

Work Programme and results for 2020

The trial sites for 2020 were based in Nottinghamshire, at a site kindly provided by Freshgro and Tim Hardstaff.

For the full report on each work area, go to the Strategic Centre for Field Vegetables project page.

Variety evaluation

In 2020 74 different varieties from 8 different seed companies were showcased, allowing growers could see varieties from different companies growing side by side.

The Carrot Demonstration Day, was held on 24th November 2020 in a virtual format on Zoom, hosted by BCGA.

The seed company presentations and videos, as well as those for the AHDB Strategic Centres variety plots and grower-led trials, are available on the BCGA webpage.

Breakage testing 2020 (Year 2 of 2 year’s testing)

A selection of carrot varieties were tested for breakage, an important varietal characteristic to avoid wastage and increase marketable yield.

After having seen the interesting results from 2019 trials, growers were keen to repeat the testing for a second year to obtain more robust results. The screening was conducted the day after harvest and is an indication of variety breakage performance.

Approximately 50 varieties were tested in both 2019 and 2020.  Results showed that there are a good selection of varieties available with equal or better resistance to breakage (strength) than the variety Nairobi.

Seed rate (density) trials

Growers wanted to know the effects of using different seed rates on plant establishment and crop yield.

Take home message:

  • The general trend was for higher yields from higher seed rates
  • Due to weather at drilling higher rates weren’t achieved, so there was no plateau in establishment
  • More defects were detected at lowest seed rates

Seed treatment trials

Growers are faced with fewer choices of seed treatments to control pests and diseases due to the reducing number of plant protection products available.

These grower-led trials made comparisons between the seed treatments BMox, Wakil and primed seed.

Take home message:

  • BMOX material started into growth fastest
  • Primed material started into growth second fastest and had the highest marketable yield
  • There were too few replicates to draw firm conclusions

Full trial reports are available on the research report page