BASF Agricultural Solutions UK
Agriculture

Pulse Check Survey 2021

Pulse Check Survey 2021: The results

Overview

Survey aim: Understand current reasons and approaches to growing field beans and combining peas, as well as the range of yields achieved.

Timing: The survey ran from 23rd March to 9th May 2021

Methodology: Online

Sample: 145 growers*

  • 95 = Arable
  • 50 = Mixed

Crops

  • Spring beans
  • Spring beans
  • Combining peas

*Number of growers who answered each question outlined

Factors that may have a positive impact on yield*

Average crop yields were compared to the average yields of selected subsets (e.g. sowing date)

Winter beansSpring beansCombining peas
  • Growing beans for more than 5 years
  • ‘Low input crop’ not a main reason for growing
  • October sowing date
  • 10 – 13cm sowing depth
  • Use of Signum® every / most years
  • Growing beans for more than 5 years
  • Use of Nirvana® every / most years
  • Applying a fungicide at mid and/or late flowering
  • Use of Signum® every / most years
  • Growing peas for more than 5 years
  • ‘Soil health improvement’ a main reason for growing
  • Plough / drill establishment method
  • Applying a fungicide at early-flowering

SURVEY FINDINGS

  • Results are based on the survey sample only and may not be indicative of the total population
  • 25% of the respondents have been growing peas and beans for 2 years or less so the survey results may be slightly more weighted towards new growers
  • Yield top tips have not been evaluated by BASF
  • Although 145 respondents, once broken down by crop and year, the survey sample becomes limited

YIELD CROSS ANALYSIS

  • Average yields were compared to the average yields of selected subsets (e.g. sowing date)
  • May give indication of factors that drive yield
  • Observations only, not a statistically valid analysis
  • Some questions were not related to a specific year (e.g. timing of fungicide applications)
  • Sample sizes are often small

What area of winter beans / spring beans / combining peas did you / will you grow in harvest years 2019, 2020 and 2021?

Number of responses for this question (2021 ha): 58 (winter beans), 68 (spring beans), 27 (combining peas)

 2018/19 (ha)2019/20 (ha)2020/21 (ha)
Winter beans1,8201,6182,302
Spring beans2,2804,0323,539
Field beans4,1005,6505,841
Combining peas9441,4241,486

The winter beans area has increased by 40% but the total pulses area is stable versus 2020

WINTER BEANS

  • 2019 yields ranged from 1.3 t/ha to 7.0 t/ha
  • 2020 yields ranged from 1.2 t/ha to 6.4 t/ha

SPRING BEANS

  • 2019 yields ranged from 0.8 t/ha to 6.9 t/ha
  • 2020 yields ranged from 0.6 t/ha to 6.2 t/ha

COMBINING PEAS

  • 2019 yields ranged from 1.0 t/ha to 4.9 t/ha
  • 2020 yields ranged from 0.6 t/ha to 4.7 t/ha

Based on your experience and/or understanding of growing field beans, what ‘top tips’ for maximising yield would you share with someone new to growing the crop?

Number of responses for this question: 108

Most frequent mentions (no. of respondents)

  • Good establishment is key (15)
  • Drill early (13)
  • Use high seed rates (13)
  • Have a deep sowing depth (11)
  • Ensure good seedbed / soil structure (10)
  • Drill when conditions are right (10)
  • Use correct seed rates (9)
  • Minimise compaction (7)
  • Control weeds / use a robust pre-em (7)

Based on your experience and/or understanding of growing combining peas, what ‘top tips’ for maximising yield would you share with someone new to growing the crop?

Number of responses for this question: 31

Most frequent mentions (no. of respondents)

  • Ensure good seedbed (9)
  • Drilling conditions more important than date e.g. warm soils (9)
  • Avoid compaction (5)
  • Keep the pigeons off (3)
  • Use reasonably high seed rate (2)
  • Use pre-em herbicides (2)
  • Drill into moisture (2)
  • Roll after drilling (2)

In the last 10 years, in how many of those years have you grown field beans / combining peas?

Number of responses for this question: 100 (field beans), 36 (combining peas)

Do you regularly use PGRO resources / contact PGRO for advice on growing peas & beans? Can you share a few details on what PGRO resources you regularly use?

Number of responses for this question: 145

Most mentioned resources / services (number of respondents)

  • Agronomy guide / app (25)
  • Variety descriptive list (22)
  • Website (18)
  • Pulse magazine (18)
  • Email updates (12)
  • Advice by telephone / email (6)
  • Seed testing (6)
  • Seed rate calculator (6)

Around 60% of survey respondents utilise PGRO resources / services

On average, how often do you grow / intend to grow field beans / combining peas in the rotation?

Number of responses for this question: 120 (field beans), 33 (combining peas)

Prior to participating in this survey, were you aware that if bentazone levels in water do not decrease, there is a significant risk that the active won’t be re-registered in 2025?

Number of responses for this question: 135

Now thinking specifically about winter beans, what are some of the main reasons that you choose to grow the crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses to this question: 77

Agronomic factors that may have a positive impact on yield*

Average winter bean yields were compared to the average yields of selected subsets (e.g. sowing date)

October sowing date

  • 2019: + 0.4 t/ha (4.7 vs 4.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 29 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.2 t/ha (3.0 vs 2.8 t/ha) based on a subset of 15 respondents

10 – 13cm drilling depth

  • 2019: + 0.4 t/ha (4.7 vs 4.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 13 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.2 t/ha (3.0 vs 2.8 t/ha) based on a subset of 10 respondents

2 fungicide applications

  • 2019: + 0.2 t/ha (4.5 vs 4.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 30 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.1 t/ha (2.9 vs 2.8 t/ha) based on a subset of 28 respondents

Signum® use every / most years

  • 2019: + 0.2 t/ha (4.5 vs 4.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 12 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.4 t/ha (3.2 vs 2.8 t/ha) based on a subset of 11 respondents

*Please note disclaimer

How would you best describe your establishment method for field beans?

Number of responses for this question: 125

When did you sow the majority of your winter beans in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 50 (2019), 45 (2020)

At what drilling depth did you sow the majority of your winter beans in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 50 (2019), 45 (2020)

Now thinking about weed control for broad-leaved weeds, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your winter beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 49 (2019), 45 (2020)

How often do you use Nirvana (imazamox + pendimethalin) as part of your winter beans weed control programme?

Number of responses for this question: 72

Now thinking about disease control, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your winter beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 48 (2019), 45 (2020)

In general, when do you tend to apply fungicide/s to your winter bean crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses for this question: 71

Do you ever use Signum® as part of your winter beans disease control programme?.

Number of responses for this question: 64

Now thinking about insecticides, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your winter beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 47 (2019), 45 (2020)

Now thinking specifically about spring beans, what are some of the main reasons that you choose to grow the crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses to this question: 81

Agronomic factors that may have a positive impact on yield*

Average spring bean yields were compared to the average yields of selected subsets (e.g. sowing date)

Plough / drill establishment method

  • 2019: + 0.2 t/ha (4.2 vs 4.0 t/ha) based on a subset of 26 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.1 t/ha (4.0 vs 3.9 t/ha) based on a subset of 32 respondents

Nirvana® use every / most years

  • 2019: + 0.2 t/ha (4.2 vs 4.0 t/ha) based on a subset of 28 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.3 t/ha (4.2 vs 3.9 t/ha) based on a subset of 36 respondents

Mid-flowering fungicide application

  • 2019: + 0.6 t/ha (4.6 vs 4.0 t/ha) based on a subset of 10 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.3 t/ha (4.2 vs 3.9 t/ha) based on a subset of 14 respondents

Signum® use every / most years

  • 2019: + 0.5 t/ha (4.5 vs 4.0 t/ha) based on a subset of 11 respondents
  • 2020: + 1.0 t/ha (4.9 vs 3.9 t/ha) based on a subset of 13 respondents

How would you best describe your establishment method for field beans?

Number of responses for this question: 125

When did you sow the majority of your spring beans in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 53 (2019), 70 (2020)

At what drilling depth did you sow the majority of your spring beans in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 53 (2019), 70 (2020)

Now thinking about weed control for broad-leaved weeds, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your spring beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 53 (2019), 70 (2020)

How often do you use Nirvana (imazamox + pendimethalin) as part of your spring beans weed control programme?

Number of responses for this question: 78

Now thinking about disease control, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your spring beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 50 (2019), 67 (2020)

In general, when do you tend to apply fungicide/s to your spring bean crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses for this question: 74

Do you ever use Signum® as part of your spring beans disease control programme?.

Number of responses for this question: 64

Now thinking about insecticides, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your spring beans area in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 50 (2019), 66 (2020)

Now thinking specifically about combining peas, what are some of the main reasons that you choose to grow the crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses to this question: 36

Agronomic factors that may have a positive impact on yield*

Average combining pea yields were compared to the average yields of selected subsets (e.g. sowing date)

Plough / drill establishment method

  • 2019: + 0.2 t/ha (3.5 vs 3.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 15 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.4 t/ha (3.1 vs 2.7 t/ha) based on a subset of 13 respondents

Nirvana® use every / most years

  • 2019: + 0.3 t/ha (3.6 vs 3.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 15 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.0 t/ha (2.7 vs 2.7 t/ha) based on a subset of 14 respondents

Early-flowering fungicide application

  • 2019: + 0.3 t/ha (3.6 vs 3.3 t/ha) based on a subset of 12 respondents
  • 2020: + 0.3 t/ha (3.0 vs 2.7 t/ha) based on a subset of 10 respondents

How would you best describe your establishment method for field beans?

Number of responses for this question: 36

When did you sow the majority of your combining peas in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 26 (2019), 26 (2020)

At what drilling depth did you sow the majority of your combining peas in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 26 (2019), 26 (2020)

Now thinking about weed control for broad-leaved weeds, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your combining peas area in harvest years 2019 and/or or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 26 (2019), 26 (2020)

How often do you use Nirvana (imazamox + pendimethalin) as part of your combining peas weed control programme?

Number of responses for this question: 32

Now thinking about disease control, which of the following statements best apply to the majority of your combining peas area in harvest years 2019 and/or 2020?

Number of responses for this question: 23 (2019), 23 (2020)

In general, when do you tend to apply fungicide/s to your spring bean crop? Please select all that apply.

Number of responses for this question: 45

Do you ever use Signum® as part of your combining peas disease control programme?.

Number of responses for this question: 25

Do you ever use Signum® as part of your combining peas disease control programme?

Number of responses for this question: 25

Pushing Pulse Yields Together

We are on a mission to increase the national yields of field beans and combining peas.

Together with growers, industry experts and agronomists, we plan to uncover key aspects of high yielding, profitable pulse crops and to help further unlock some of their untapped yield potential.

Sharing why and how farmers grow peas and beans, best practice advice, and fresh insight, we aim to develop a new knowledge hub for those wanting to get the most from their pulse crops.

Take me there
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