BASF Agricultural Solutions UK

RevYstories: Toby Hogsbjerg

In 2021 we will be hearing more in-depth from our UK growers about their farming experiences, as they share their stories of using Revystar® XE.

Find out more about Toby Hogsbjerg and follow his RevYstory throughout the upcoming season below.

About Toby

Toby grew up on a farm in Suffolk and after attending Harper Adams and gaining an HND (Agric) started his career with Broadoak/Coop Farms in Norfolk where he specialised in root crop production. He is now back in Norfolk again, manager of the Wicken Farms Company, a job which he started in autumn 2018. In the intervening years he has managed farms in the south of England, specialising in growing root crops and potatoes and a move across the water to Southern Ireland saw him involved in growing onions as well as root crops.

Toby manages 950 ha for the Wicken Farms Company, growing winter wheat, winter barley, winter oilseed rape, spring barley, sugar beet, potatoes, spring peas and game cover for the estate’s partridge shoot.

The soils range from blow away sand to sandy clay loam and tend to be low in organic matter content because of the light land and the root crops in the rotation. Good soil management is, Toby says, crucial to achieving his production targets, and routine soil sampling coupled with prescriptive and targeted fertiliser applications are undertaken to maintain indices. Toby is hoping to build soil organic matter which will help retain nutrients, however, he said, “It’s not an easy task on sand.” With over 200ha of spring crops, cover cropping is a key part of ensuring the soils are as good as he can get them with the limitations that he has. Toby added, “Destoning and potato planting is a fair amount of harassment for soil quality.” Toby is aiming to move towards min till as much as he is able to and is interested in looking at new technology and new products. His aim is to make the farming system as efficient economically and productively as possible, utilising the benefits of each crop in order to bring advantage to the next crop in the rotation. Toby said, “I need to ensure an efficient rotation, we are 1 in 10 on potatoes at the moment, which is good and that is keeping soil disease levels low on the farm.”

Toby is currently establishing a Countryside Stewardship Scheme with buffer strips, flower rich margins and pollen and nectar strips up the centre of fields connecting woodland areas.

What's happening on Toby's Farm?

Winter cropping

We have 220 ha in the ground SY Insitor, DSV Theodore and KWS Kerrin. The Insitor and Theodore were drilled in September, before the rain and it is all looking pretty good. It is just coming to GS29-30. All of these main drilled wheats had 100 kg/ha N at the beginning of March. The Kerrin was drilled in January , after sugar beet, it is tillering, and needs some nitrogen really but it’s a bit cold for that.

We are not putting a T0 on the Theodore as it doesn’t need one and we are putting a tiny bit of tebuconazole on the Insitor. The Theodore is exceptionally clean, there is a tiny bit of septoria in the bottom of the Insitor but nothing else. Nothing has really got going yet and the massive northerly that we are experiencing at the moment with a wind chill of -6oC has just stomped on everything. We have 120 ha winter barley in the ground, mostly SY Kingsbarn and two fields of DSV Sensation which looks fantastic. The winter barley has already had all of its nitrogen.

Spring drilling

In the last week we have drilled 110 ha of sugar beet and 70ha of combining peas and are destoning for potatoes which we will start planting tomorrow. 40ha of spring barley and 25 ha of spring wheat will also be going in this week and that will be all our spring drilling done.

In the press

Toby is one of Crop Production Magazine’s Real Results Pioneers. On his North Norfolk estate, where roots are the main cropping priorities across drought-prone soils, he explains how his fungicide policy on the wheats fit in.

Read more

Toby is part of our Real Results Circle

We caught up with Toby to find out more about his farm, farming philosophies and biggest agronomic challenges

Visit Toby's Profile
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Revystar® XE contains Revysol® (mefentrifluconazole) and Xemium® (fluxapyroxad). Revystar® XE, Revysol® and Xemium® are all trademarks of BASF. Siltra Xpro contains bixafen + prothioconazole.