Latest Updates - Winter Linseed

October 2018

Several growers have sown winter linseed this year following a failed oilseed rape crop. The most common reason for the OSR failure is Flea Beetles, which of course, don't affect winter sown linseed.

While the Flea Beetles may not be an issue for Winter Linseed, there are a few 'Learning lessons' from incidents seen in linseed crops so far this year.....



This field of 'Volga' Winter Linseed was sown into a field following barley and, before that, long term grass.....


Clearly, Winter Linseed can be prone to this pest, expecially in the first few years after long term grass. Once the crop is sown, there are no approved insecticide control measures for wireworm in linseed.


Residual Herbicides

In one case this year we have seen some effect of the residual herbicide, Centium, affecting the subsequent winter linseed with a bleaching of the leaves.




So far, it looks like the crop will grow away from the initial damage....





March 2018 - Coping with the wet and the cold



Current field conditions are wet and cold. When next able to travel growers are encouraged to get nitrogen and fungicide on as Nitrogen is required to wake the crop up and get it moving.

A PGR will only be required if/when the crop has reached a height of; 15-20cm Caramba and 30-35cm Caramba PGR.

Reports of pigeon grazing have been coming in and growers should remain vigilant as OSR grows away. Keep them moving on.



January 2018 - Pigeon damage spotted in Buckinghamshire

We have noted damage to a winter linseed crop in Buckinghamshire. Fortunately the pigeons seem only to be interested in the tip of the plants and we are confident that the crop will compensate with new branches in the spring but growers are advised to keep a look out for this particular pest. 


Update July 2017 - Harvest

The harvest of Angora, winter linseed, is completed at local farmer, Tim Sykes's farm. Tim has reported a yield of 3.0mt/ha, which is more than he expected and with new knives fitted and a dry day, Tim's combine driver said "The winter linseed was a lot easier than the oilseed rape". The following video shows just how easy it was to cut and chop the straw....


Update: March 2017

New - Full Report Available (click here)


Current Crop Conditions

Spring management of winter linseed crops is starting to get underway where and when farmers can get onto fields, while the winter has been relevantly dry, the last few weeks have prevented fieldwork from taking place. The vast majority of crops seen to date have well tillered and not to forward, coming in about 10cm in height. Crops this size or smaller can be pushed forward with the first split of N and then canopy size managed with growth regulating fungicides (see winter linseed bulletin 04/17 for full details). 


Looking Ahead

A number of crops have some broad-leaved weed issues to clean up, however as the canopy of the crop is small, there is still time to do this, it is important to get any weed control and growth regulation done before green bud stage in winter linseed.

Crops of 20cm of more height should not receive a first split of Nitrogen, as this will drive excess stem growth and increase the risk of lodging. 


There have also been reports of recommendations of Crawler to be applied to winter linseed crops.

No Crawler applications should be made to winter linseed after the New Year, as this will impact on the growth and yield of the crop. Any outstanding Crawler recommendations should now be cancelled. 


Update: Jan 2017

Current Crop Conditions

The series of cold snaps experienced through November and December have not effected crops, regardless off crop size. Most crops, whether or not they have large amounts of top growth, have put down considerable root systems and this has helped small crops through. 


Looking Ahead

Spring is just around the corner but crops must first pass through the “hungry gap” when pigeons get pushed out of oilseed rape crops and before spring cereals and pluses are planted. At this stage winter linseed is the often the only attractive crop available for pigeons.

That said, the crop is highly tolerant of pigeon grazing and will recover by growing back from the root stock. Often, for every stem grazed off, two new stems will replace it.

The most important thing to watch for pigeon grazing is that it is not uneven, has this will lead to uneven crop growth and impact on management decisions during the spring. Unless crops are very forward, keep pigeons off.


Winter linseed spring management usually starts around the last week of February/ first week of March with first split of Nitrogen and fungicide/PGR timings. Unlike oilseed rape, linseed needs very little nitrogen to get it started post-winter. Also temperatures do not have to get very warm for a linseed crop to go from dormant to full steam ahead, remain vigilant and be prepared to apply a growth regulator fungicide , even on small crops.


Prothioconazole in the form of Proline 275 has been approved for linseed, both winter and spring. Giving growers an extra option for a non-growth regulatory fungicide to partner with actives such as metconazole (Caramba/ Sunorg Pro) that have a growth regulatory ability. This will take pressure off of difenconazole (Plover/Difcor 250EC) which is the most commonly used fungicide partner. Prothioconazole is equal to difenconazole for disease control, especially Pasmo, so crop protection is not being compromised.