The effect of applied sulphur on the growth, grain yield and control of powdery mildew in spring wheat

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Type Article
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-56
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Applied Biology
Publication statusPublished - 28 Sept 2005
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During the years 1998 and 1999, two field experiments were conducted at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, UK, to test the effects of soil- and foliar-applied sulphur (S) in spring wheat. S was applied at 0, 20, 40, 60 kg ha−1 in 1998 and at 60 kg ha−1 in 1999, using CaSO4 as a source for the soil application and micronised S (Thiovit, 80%), with and without an organosilicone adjuvant, as a source for the foliar application. Senescence was retarded and grain yield was increased in 1998, following application of foliar S in conjunction with the organosilicone adjuvant. Application of foliar S was associated with a reduction in the level of mildew (Erysiphe graminis) recorded on the upper leaves and ears of the canopy. In 1999, grain yield was unaffected by treatments. A low level of mildew in the crop, particularly on the ears, is thought to be the reason for the lack of response in spite of the fact that senescence was retarded with foliar S application. A combined application of foliar S and commercial fungicide (cyproconazole) to the crop appeared to be more effective at controlling mildew than either S or fungicide applied alone. The study shows that there may be a role for S in a low-input/organic wheat production system, where there is a need to reduce artificial inputs.