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Agroforum 2004 July


This season’ yields may start closing up of rape growing (Zoltán Nag) 2

Finally, this year the rather reduced number of rape growers may profit by the crop. Many thought that they had to give up producing due to the lasting and extremely warm and dry weather. By now the area to be harvested has reduced to not more than 90,000 hectares. In May rape stands were in excellent conditions everywhere with good prospects of a high average yield for the country. Strictly observing of the crop management programme has become an important requirement also for rapes. This means that rape growers do not reach success accidentally and not only because of favourable weather conditions. The world trends in plant oil industry also help gaining ground of rapes; in addition, rape oil can better serve health than nutrition experts have ever thought before. Given the climatic and other site conditions, growing this crop has a future in Hungary.

Rape varieties in commercial growing (Zoltán Nagy)

The article gives an overview of the issues of using rape varieties in Hungary. It informs on the leading global breeding houses that are present in the Hungarian market with over 50 conventional varieties and 11 hybrids. Thanks to their excellent traits, the importance of hybrids is more and more increasing (currently they account for 35-37 % of the grown varieties). Eight varieties of the rich choice dominate almost 60% of the cropping area. The author discusses EU guidelines for glucosinolate content and its importance in variety use. Finally, he informs on that sales in the so-called “units” are spreading in the marketing of hybrid rape seeds. One unit contains 1.5 million seeds with good germination ability, sufficient for sowing on 3-3.5 hectares.

Growing rapes is always interesting (x) (Péter Kiss)

Saatbau Linz Hungaria Ltd provides information on rape varieties.

The role of plant growth regulators in rape management programmes (Zoltán Blum)

Western European rape growing has long traditions of using triazole fungicides with plant growth regulator effect. Azoles as active substance influence plant hormone regimes through the suppression of gibberellin metabolism, and autumn treatment prevents excessive growth of rape plants. This is favourable for winter hardiness, drought tolerance and root growth. The author gives an account of the results of treatments with metconazole fungicides.

The role of sulphur fertilizers in rape management programmes (Zoltán Blum)

The amount of sulphur getting back to the soil from the air has significantly reduced due to the stricter environmental regulations. Therefore the practice of nutrient supply until now needs to be revised and sulphur properly replaced. The article discusses the role of sulphur in plant physiology, lists the conditions increasing the likelihood of sulphur deficiency, describes the symptoms of deficiency according to the particular growth stages and the possible means of sulphur supply.

How to reach rape yields of 3-4 tons? (x) (Tamás Fehér)

Hungarian Kwizda Ltd. informs on the advantages of using its products in rape growing.

Safe storage of harvested rapes (Zoltán Blum)

Rapes as grains are more difficult to store than e.g. cereals due to the biological traits, chemical composition and other characteristics of the crop. Grain moisture and temperature have an especially important role in keeping quality. Based on trial measurements, the author discusses the effect of these factors and summarises the theory and practice of drying.

Interview with rape growers (Zoltán Nagy)

The article reports on three successful rape growers. They speak about the key points of the rape management programme (selecting the variety, soil preparation, nutrient supply, pest management, harvesting, etc.), the issues of profitability, and generally about their commitment to growing the crop. The interviewed persons are: Kálmán Hadarics (Plant Ltd., Nagylózs), Zoltán Szûcs (Szûcs deposit company, Mosonmagyaróvár-Újudvar) and István Varga smallholder of a family farm (Soponya).

How long can starting of the stuck biodiesel production be put off? (Zoltán Nagy)

In compliance with the EU requirements, in Hungary 5% of the diesel oil of mineral origin shall be replaced by plant oil by 2010. At the same time, in the European Union the share in its use must be increased from the current 5% to 30%. All these make it necessary to set the unfortunately stuck biodiesel program going in Hungary. The article gives a brief outlook to the situation in other countries, informs on the Hungarian regulations in force (payment of taxes and subsidies) on the experimental use of biodiesel and outlines the running of a possible Hungarian biodiesel programme.

German growers fight against the damages of cabbage maggot (Gábor Seiwerth)

The article is a translation from the journal Raps. In Germany the attention was turned to the unusual damage of cabbage maggot in rapes in the autumn of 2003. The author gives an account of the biology of the pest, the caused symptoms and the experience in flight activity. He also deals with the difficulties of control (only a few insecticides have been registered for treatment of the pest). According to the Hungarian experts’ opinion, cabbage maggot has not caused damage in rapes so far, but the above example warns growers to pay special attention to the eventual occurrence of the pest.

What surprises has the previously hectic rape market in store? (Zoltán Nagy)

The article gives a detailed overview of the market situation of rapes, presenting global plant oil production between 1998 and 2004 and dealing with the reasons of the possibly higher price level of rapes. The author discusses the state and characteristics of rape growing in the countries newly accessed to the EU. In Europe the demand is still growing for rape oil both for human consumption and industrial use. The author examines the prospects of Hungarian rape growing. He says that the future of growing and marketing this crop is adversely influenced by the stuck biodiesel programme, the long distance between the oil factory in Martfû and the production sites of good conditions for rapes in the Transdanubian region and the insufficient level of storage that would be important for eventual exports.



Recommendations to consider regarding summer tillage (Dr. Márta Birkás)

The author reviews the operations of summer tillage, including how to avoid the possible mistakes. In the first part she recalls the most important remarks on stubble management written in the past hundred years. She outlines the major objectives of stubble management, such as to reduce soil moisture loss; to control heat and air regime of the soil; to improve tillage operations by increasing biological activity in the soil; mulching, to leave stubble residues on the soil surface and to incorporate in the soil; plant protection, enhancing the emergence of volunteers and weeds but suppressing conditions for pests and diseases. In her opinion stubble management is taking care of the harvested field in order to preserve soil moisture in the off-season period and to increase it together with improving tillage conditions. The author presents techniques for dry and moist soils that allow conservation of the soil structure. Finally she gives some ideas how to avoid mistakes in moist soils for a period likely to be rainy. Colour pictures complete the study.

Colour page: Stubble management (Photo by: Dr. Márta Birkás)

1-3.      The mistake of leaving soil surface exposed to water and organic matter loss can be avoided 1) without stripping, 2) with ploughing, 3) with disking

4-6.      Soil compacting with outworn implement

7.         Moist soil is not resistant to trampling

8-10.    Implements for stubble management suitable for conserving soil structure

11.       The result of careful stubble stripping: moderate clod formation at basic tillage

12-13   Soil remains moist below the mulch cover

14.       Late criticism

This is the way GrowHow takes soil samples and gives technical advice (x)

Kemira GrowHow presents its service in soil sampling advising launched last year.

There is a herbicide to completely clear the stubble (x) (Mihály Czepó)

It is how to use the glyphosate herbicide Roundup Mega of Monsanto in the stubble, applying Transorb technique?

It’s a dry fact that desiccation is paying (x) (Mihály Czepó)

Monsanto presents its glyphosate herbicide Roundup Mega applied for the desiccation of sunflowers and maize.

Dangerous plant diseases (I/1) White rot of sunflowers (Dr. Pál Békési)

One of the most successful undertakings in the whole history of Agrofórum was the series “Dangerous 12” presenting weed plants. The series of articles launched in 1993 was recognized by the widest range of readers for its values and usefulness. The idea of starting a series also on the major pests and diseases similarly to weeds was raised already years ago. The “Dangerous pests” started accordingly in March 2003 and is still on in the agenda of the journal, and in this number we begin the series on the third group, “Dangerous plant diseases”. The aim is the same for all the series: to give technically reliable knowledge, ready to use in practice on the biology of the noxious species and the possibilities of its control, written with due care but not in the form of a scientific article.

The first part of the series presents the pathogen affecting mostly sunflowers in Hungary, Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and the provoked disease. Colour picture illustrate the symptom of the disease.

Colour page: White rot of sunflowers (Photo by: Dr. Pál Békési)

1.      Symptom of white stem rot: wilting of the affected plant

2.      White rot spread from the leaf blade through the petiole to the middle of the stem

3.      White head rot in an advanced stage

4.      Final stage of white head rot: only the stump remained from the stem holding the head.

5.      Mature apothecia produced in masses

Do we have the reason to hope that sunflowers won’t be affected by diseases this year? (Dr. Pál Békési)

The paper analyses the likely onset of sunflower diseases, such as ones caused by Diaporthe helianthi, sunflower rust (Puccinia helianthi), grey mould (Botrytis cinerea) and white stem and head rot (Sclerotinia sclerotiorum), in the light of last years’ infestations and this season’s weather conditions.

Innovative products and integrated plant protection (x)

Bayer CropScience invited its partners for two large-scale field demonstrations. The first Rendezvous with Bayer took place in Lajoskomárom for Transdanubia, the western part of Hungary on 15-16 June, while for the Great Plain, the eastern part of the country, the event was held in Kaba on 17-18 June. The article summarises what was seen there and informs on the products of the company.

Protecting grains (Margit Cziklin)

It is not easy to protect grains from storage pests. The way of thinking about plant protection of the persons involved in storage, the quality of the existing storage facilities and the state of the products to be stored are all decisive in the success of protection.

The protection of grains is a continuous task throughout the year, the key points of which are: the kind and the technical level of the grain store, the quality of the product to be stored, as well as the densities and dominance relations of storage pest populations, says the author. She informs on the means of controlling such pests. Colour photos illustrate the article.


(Photo by: Cziklin Margit)

1.      Probe trap for the regular checking of the pests

2.      Granary weevils may cause damage continuously, throughout the year

3.      Only the seed-coat remains after weevils

4.      Flour beetles and their damage

5.      Rice weevil and the seeds after the leave of the adult

6.      Kapos-CFG for disinfesting grains


Kapos-CFG – a new possibility for the preventive protection of grains (Margit Cziklin, József Nagy)

The Plant Protection and Soil Conservation Service of County Somogy developed a machine with centrifugal pump for the disinfestation of grains several decades ago, that have been used since then in the storehouses and mills throughout the country. Recently the number of companies involved in storing grains has increased, storage and transporting capacities within the storehouses have changed. This is why the original model of CFG has been further developed. The article informs on the technical parameters of the new equipment.

Control of Western corn rootworm is plain as day (Ferenc Jáger)

Summit-Agro presents the advantages of its management programmes in controlling Western corn rootworm, in particular the use of the acetamiprid insecticide Mospilan 20 SP, respecting honeybees.



Let’s make efforts to reasonably protect our vineyards (Ágnes Schweigert, Szabolcs Makó)

At the time of writing the article, it is hardly possible to guess what the weather will be in the remaining part of the year after the rather dry and warm summers with us of from 2000, but we do know that it can have a decisive role in the protection of vineyards. However, the copious rainfall in April, then showers and storms, with high volume of rain at certain places in late May and early June indicate and forecast that this year needs to be handled in a different way from the point of view of plant protection, especially in terms of the diseases.

This paper, highly important for the practice, is supporting growers with tabulated management programmes for the different weather scenarios.

Varieties used in Hungarian vineyards between 1973 and 2003 (Eszter Balikó, Imre Tóth)

There are only a few products of agriculture and food industry for which variety seems to be so decisive a factor as the ones in viticulture and winemaking. Only certain grapevine varieties may be planted in the particular administrative areas, winegrowing regions and production sites, as the establishment in a winegrowing region of a variety producing poor quality wine would endanger the reputation of the whole winegrowing region, therefore would hurt public interest. The classification of grape varieties suitable for winemaking in the particular administrative areas is provided for by a Council Regulation of the European Union.

A great many professionals raise objections to the recent phenomenon that vine-growers have planted too many varieties in the vineyards, so wineries of the winegrowing regions may place relatively small volumes of the particular wine lots on the market. Furthermore, the question, whether global varieties or traditional Hungarian ones should be planted, has been hotly discussed.

The authors inform readers about the actual variety use according to the data on the planted propagating materials.



Under the magnifying glass … (26.) Machines for rape sowing (Dr. József Fûzy, István Komlódi)

The implements suitable for rape management programmes can be basically selected from the machinery system of cereals, rapes may be grown using the same machines. There are slight differences only with sowing and harvesting. In case of the first operation, the mechanisation of sowing lower rates of seeds (2.0-5.0 kg/ha) may cause problems, while during the second one the main objective is to prevent harvesting losses. Therefore, among its tasks of public interest, in the frame of developing rape management programmes, the Hungarian Institute of Agricultural Engineering (Gödöllõ) studied the working quality of the row drills, Jubileum 125 32T and KV 6210A of Kühne Co. The article gives an account of the results of testing.

HORSCH Tiger deep field cultivator for no-plough tillage and incorporation of stem residues (x)

It describes how to apply Horsch field cultivators to substitute for ploughing.

Masters of stubble stripping and seedbed preparation: HORSCH Terrano FG and FX (x)

It presents stubble stripping implements of Horsch, suitable for shallow and deep tillage.

Seen, heard, read. AXIÁL Ltd. will distribute HYUNDAI construction machines

At a joint press conference on 16 June 2004, Hyundai and Axiál Ltd. announced that from the second part of the year Axiál Ltd. will distribute Hyundai’s construction machines suitable for deep structural engineering. By that, in addition to Manitou telehandlers used in high structural engineering, in the near future, crawler and rubber wheel swing jib loaders, various front loaders and trucks will also be included in the more and more increasing choice of Axiál Ltd. in construction machinery.

Under the magnifying glass … (27) Machines for rape harvesting (Dr. József Fûzy, István Komlódi)

While the key factor in evaluating machines for suitability of rape sowing may be the lower seed rate requirement, the main criterion for selecting harvesters is likely to be the minimum crop losses possible. Therefore, during the development of rape management programmes, Claas Dominator 208 Mega combine equipped with Biso Integral CX 100 rape harvesting adapter, as well as Claas Mega 204 and John Deere Z 1056 combines with ZÜRN Compact side cutters were tested for crop losses.



Seen, heard, read. Election of officials in the Hungarian Association of Agricultural Sciences

On the 13th conference of delegates of the Hungarian association of Agricultural Sciences, the resigning president Dr. Károly Tamás handed over distinguished awards of the Association to specialists for their outstanding agricultural activity. The official ceremony was followed by the election of the new functionaries for the period 2004-2008.

Euro-based credit scheme for warehousing. Press release

Being aware of the current wheat area and the expected yields, Hungária Warehousing and Trading Co., together with Raiffeisen Bank Ltd., have worked out a finance construction based on covering by warehousing tickets that will allow the intervention buy-up of cereals.

Results of the 27th ISTA Congress (dr. Katalin Ertsey Peregi)

It is a report on the 27th Congress of ISTA (International Seed Testing Association) held in Budapest on 13-14 May. The author introduces the organization and informs on the most important decisions made on the congress and mentions the achieved results.

Notes for growers. About area-based subsidies (Miklós Kurucz)

The biggest part of the subsidies offered by the European Union for applicants submitting proposals for the implementation of the Common Agricultural Policy is allocated for growers based on the farming area. The brief article summarizes the key elements of this subsidy system.

Agrolinz: with merging to become stronger (x )

Ingo Rendel, the manager of the fertilizer trading company Agrolinz Melamine International Hungary Ltd. informs on their activity.

Your field will also show the result – BASF Field Crop Day 2004 (x)

BASF organized a series of presentations titled “The Day of the Field” in Szekszárd and Szarvas in early June, where the specialists of the company presented the results of the trials carried out with BASF products.

Written anno … (Dr. Péter Inczédy