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Agroforum 2008 April

Considering the pros and cons
(Dr. László Bódis)

TOPIC OF THE MONTH

Report from the meeting of the Variety Qualification Committee
(Dr. Katalin Ertsey Peregi, Dr. Lázár László)
The Field Crops Section of the Variety Qualification Committee held its meeting on 4 March 2008. You may get to know what was heard there and the criteria against which the varieties are tested in order to be included in the National List of Varieties and from there, in the Common List of Varieties of the European Community.

FOCUSING ON MEDICINAL PLANTS

The current topics of the medicinal plant sector
(Dr. Éva Zámbori Németh, Dr. Anita Kozak, Dr. F. Erdész)
In our days the use of medicinal plants is very popular all over the world. Although such plants have always been essential in the developing countries, they are much sought after again also in the most developed countries. The authors try to briefly outline the Hungarian traditions of the sector and its potentials. They present the recent and current events and trends, drawing the attention to the possibilities of a breakthrough.

TOPICALLY, UP-TO-DATE

Should we grow more maize?
(Dr. Péter Horn)
Will maize be a key crop in the 21st century? Why should we grow more maize? Read the article to find the answer.

Challenges and choices at Szekszárd Plant Co.
(József Molnár)
The article informs on the past and present of Szekszárdi Növény Zrt. (‘Szekszárd Plant Co.’), and outlines the plans for future development.

A personal confession of a maize seed waiting for sowing
(Dr. István Csíbor)
The demand of maize from the point of view of the crop “itself”.

The key factors of intensive maize growing
(Dr. János Nagy)
The professor of Debrecen University was seeking the answer to “how?”, namely “How to grow more maize without increasing cropping area?” The evident answer is: intensively.

Maize as a source of bio-energy
(Dr. János Nagy, Dr. Tamás Rátonyi, Dr. Endre Harsányi)
Ethanol has been produced from maize in a cost-effective way in various countries. Under the present conditions, it is maize also in Hungary, which provides the most efficient source of ethanol production. This can create a new market for maize, new working places for rural population and can reduce the volume of oil imports.

Economic evaluation of weed control programmes in maize
(Dr. Katalin Takács György, Dr. Endre Széll, Enikő Lencsés)
The experts focus on the economic assessment of weed control programmes in maize, showing its method through a simple example.

Pre-, early post or targeted post-emergence weed control in maize? (x)
(Tamás Fehér)
This is Hungarian Kwizda’s offer for maize growers for this season.

A new assessment of ecological conditions of maize growing
(Béla Péter, Szabolcs Bella, Dr. János Mika)
The specialists present a new method for assessing potential maize yields, describing meteorological factors of a certain growing season and the productivity of the soil in a certain production site with a multifactorial, non-linear function.

Strength and harmony in maize (x)
(István Rikk)
Bayer CropScience recommends Laudis (tembothrion) for efficient weed control in maize.

European situation about resistance to pollen beetle and certain Hungarian recommendations
(István Farkas)
The zoologist of the Plant Protection and Soil Conservation Directorate of the Agricultural Office in county Vas presents the geographical distribution of pollen beetle populations resistant to pyrethroids in Europe, including the Hungarian situation. He gives a tabulated list of products registered for use against pollen beetle. The article is finished with recommendations for the timing of the treatments, taking into account the protection of beneficial organisms, such as bees.

Alert Sun: for protecting sunflowers (x)
(István Rácz)
DuPont offers the commercial package AlertÒ Sun (famoxadon + flusilazole) for the control of fungal diseases in sunflowers.

DuPont with cereal fungicides, efficiently and in a cost-effective way (x)
(István Rácz)
This is DuPont’s recommendation for fungicides registered for use in cereals.

Controlling monocot weeds in cereals (x)
(László Farády)
A brief description of herbicides for cereals from Bayer CropScience for the season of 2008 can be found under this title.

Dangerous plant diseases (I/5) Monilinia brown rot of stone fruits
(Dr. Márton Glits, Gábor Mező)
In the frame of the series about dangerous plant diseases, you may get acquainted with Monilinia brown rot of stone fruits. The authors present the pathogens of the disease, their geographical distribution, biology, host range, symptoms and the possible means of control.

Alternatives ways of early spring infection for the apple scab fungus (Venturia inaequalis)
(Dr. Imre Holb)
The classical way of overwintering of the apple scab fungus is by sexual fruiting bodies in fallen leaves. Some years ago, an interesting phenomenon could be observed in orchards with incidence of apple scab, from where the fallen leaves were removed. In spite of the lack of foliage on the ground, early scab infection took place, furthermore in certain cases this happened even earlier than it could be expected based on the release of ascospores. This fact indicates that there was an alternative source of inoculum in addition to ascospores produced on the leaf litter.

Practical issues of controlling apple scab (x)
(Imre Barkaszi)
Arysta LifeScience Hungary Ltd.’s offer for apple scab control can be found here.

WORTHY OF ATTENTION

Scotts recipes for success – potatoes (x)
Scotts company recommends its Agroleaf foliar fertilizers for potato growers.

Pesticides by simply clicking – Direktagro’s new on-line store has opened (x)

These are the recent news about Direktagro on-line store.

Seen heard, read. Kemira GrowHow and Yara fertilizer manufacturer merged
(Dr. György Demes)
As it has been released by the media, Kemira GrowHow and Yara International ASA officially merged on 6 March 2008. It also means that, from that date on, Kemira continues operation under the name of Yara, and its products are placed on the global market under the international brand name Yara. Consequently, the name of the Hungarian Kemira GrowHow Ltd. changes to Yara Hungária Ltd.

Global spread of genetically modified plants in 2007
(Sándor Oravecz)
The International Service for the Acquisition for Agri-Biotech Applications published the cropping areas of genetically modified (GM) crops for 2007 on the Internet. The article gives a brief summary of the report.

Certain experience of controlling volunteer IMI and Express sunflowers
(Zsuzsanna Hoffmann Pathy)
The yield-decreasing effect of volunteers is rather big, in addition, they contribute to the survival of sunflower diseases. This particularly justifies that more attention should be drawn to the control of volunteers, and among them, to those of IMI and Express sunflowers.

Meteorological instruments – sophisticated achievements of several centuries (3)
(Tamás Tóth)
In this article of the series about meteorological instruments, the author presents other devices important for monitoring and recrding weather and climate data, which are widely used even today at the meteorological stations in Hungary.

The effect of nitrogen fertilizers on quality (x)
(Gábor Müller)
Linzer Agro Trade Hungary Ltd. draws growers’ attention to LINZER WARE fertilizers.

Lettuces deserve more attention (1)
(Dr. István Terbe)
There are several countries in the world where much higher value is set on lettuces than in Hungary, and they are consumed not only seasonally but are an integral part of the everyday diet. The production conditions are not always better in Southern and Western Europe than in the Carpathian basin, but people consume ten or twenty times more there than an average family in Hungary. This is why the author presents the species suitable for growing and the role of leaf vegetables in modern diet.

Fresh French bean season can be extended
(Dr. Katalin Slezák)
Some years ago there was a demand for fresh French beans on Hungarian markets from late June to late September. It seems that the habits of a part of consumers have changed by now, such commodity appears, in particular, in small trays with 250-500 g product, in spring and late autumn on both the more demanding small market places and shelves of the chains of big department stores. In these periods the crop cannot be reliably grown in Hungarian fields, but it is possible to extend the season by growing under plastic tunnels or with temporary cover. Protected growing can be useful not only from the point of view of timing, but the quality and marketing characteristics of legume crops are also better.

Chili pepper growing under unheated plastic cover
(András Paksi)
The article presents the elements of chili pepper management programme based on pepper growing under unheated plastic cover. Furthermore, the author introduces certain species, varieties and types recommended for growing.

Students’ page. Hungarian and international practice of controlling Spanish slug (Arion lusitanicus)
(Anna Szabó)
Spanish slug came a long way until it arrived in Hungary almost twenty years ago. The mollusc devastated the fields of the whole Europe from the Iberian peninsula, and now it also requires a place on the pages of Hungarian technical journals. This is why a student of Budapest Corvinus University presents the morphology, biology, life cycle, damage and the available means of controlling the pest.

Ornaments of our house and homeland (3) Dwarfs and giants in the garden – the endless diversity of tulips
(Dr. Zoltán Hámori)
The third part of the series brings the various kinds of tulips to readers.

How do foreign certifying organisations perform certifications and what is bio-dynamic production?
(Katalin Szépkuthy)
The professional of Hungária Öko Garancia Ltd. (‘Hungarian Eco Guarantee’) briefly outlines the range of the widely known foreign certifying organisations responsible for the control of ecological farmers, and also deals with the basic elements of bio-dynamic growing.

About the place of phosphorous in organic farming
(Szilveszter Benedek, Dr. György Füleky, Dr. László Márton)
Up-to-date nutrient management is based on the knowledge of the nutrient content of soils. This is of particular importance in ecological farming where it is the role of fertilizer application to replace the amount of nutrients removed from the soil by harvesting the plants.

LOOKOUT

Browsing in foreign journals
(Compiled and translated by: Eszter Polgár Balogh)
You may read brief summaries of certain interesting articles published in foreign technical journals.

MECHANISATION, MACHINES

The expected costs of agricultural operations by machines in 2008
(Dr. Lajos Gockler)
Year by year the Hungarian Institute of Agricultural Engineering (MGI) works out and publishes for the current year the expected performance and costs of power machines and implements (groups of machines) in agriculture, in order to support decision-making of farmers and to inform professionals dealing with mechanisation in agriculture. They start from the numbers generated at the monitored basis holdings and calculate with the expected prices and wages, as well as with other costs to show the cost of a particular operation performed with different types of machines. These average guiding numbers can be considered as a stating point for calculating the cost of mechanical operations.

A new option for reducing costs: front seedbed preparation (x)
(Norbert Páska)
Güttler Ltd. recommends its front seedbed preparators for growers.

Väderstad-clinic. “I am committed to tillage without turning the soil and using Väderstad machines” (x)
A grower shares his experience in tillage without turning the soil carried out with Väderstad implements.

Let’s learn about tractors (5)
(Dr. Vilmos Varga)
The colourful and large family of universal tractors has been further enriched by the design of chassis and running gears. In spite of the fact that recently light rubber belt tractors have also been classified among universal tractors, the author deals only with machines with wheel running gears.

Application technique advice for growers (4)
(Jenő Huszár, Miklós Pánczél)
In the first part of their series the specialists of Farmcenter Ltd. drew the attention to the importance of application technique in the efficacy of the treatment, then gave an overview of TEEJET tips, such as flat spray tips and tips with mixed (hybrid) drop formation. Now they present tips with conical spray pattern.

OTHER COMMUNICATIONS

Book review. János Nagy: Maize growing
The author of the book wishes to assist maize growers so that they could reach the highest possible yields with the most reasonable way of farming, the least possible input and environmental load, ensuring the duly expectable benefit.

Outstanding persons of our agricultural past. Géza Doby (1877-1968)
(Miklós Kurucz)
Readers may get acquainted with the life and work of Géza Doby among the remarkable persons of our agricultural history.

Portrait. Talking with the meteorologist Károly Vissy
(Dr. László Bódis)
This time we talked with the meteorologist Károly Vissy about his career, as well as about climate change, meteorological forecasts, their accuracy, and role in agriculture.

Note for growers About a farming system that involves a special approach
(Miklós Kurucz)
This piece of the series deals with growing based on the natural life cycle of plants and biological pest management, namely ecological farming.

Legal page. Land protection contribution and penalty
(Dr. Lajos Szabó)
When presenting the most important provisions of the Act No. 127 of 2007 on the Protection of the land, the legal expert referred to land protection contribution and the obligation of paying land protection penalty various times. Now he gives a detailed description of these two legal institutions.

Written anno…
(Dr. Péter Inczédy)