A new biological seed treatment that increases the emergence speed of oilseed rape and brassica crops is now available from UPL UK & Ireland. CPM reports.

A new seed treatment from plant protection firm, UPL, is set to shake up establishment in OSR and brassica crops. Sylas-ST™ is a highly-concentrated seed treatment that claims to improve the crop’s nutrient and water uptake, leading to rapid establishment, growth and increased plant biomass.

Technical support for UPL UK & Ireland, Rob Adamson, said: “Increasing an oilseed rape plant’s emergence speed and subsequent growth is important for a variety of factors, mainly the need to minimise the impact of damage from pests such as cabbage stem flea beetle.

“The quicker we can get the crop growing and established, the better. Not only to overcome pest pressure, but to also overcome the declining daylight hours and therefore photosynthetic activity at the time of planting in the autumn.

Consistent increase

Independent trials have shown that plants treated with Sylas-ST demonstrate a significant increase in biomass both above and below ground. “In fact, two years’ worth of trials have shown a consistent increase in root mass of around 65%, this is compared to a 25% increase shown from a nutrition-based market standard,” he added.

Sylas-ST is formulated from concentrated naturally produced complex sugars found in seaweed, known as oligosaccharides, which stimulate the activity of plant enzymes such as reductases, to increase nutrient and water translocation.

“The increase in enzyme activity improves the utilisation of crucial nutrients within the plant. This is complimented by an improved root system which increases the potential of soil exploration.”

Drought tolerance

Trials have shown that as well as improving emergence speed, Sylas-ST also improves a plant’s drought tolerance, with turgidity being maintained for longer due to an increased root structure and increased water uptake.

Rob added added: “With increasing regulatory pressure on traditional seed treatment chemistry, as an industry, we need to think outside of the box and find sustainable alternatives to support growers.

“Sylas-ST demonstrates exciting product innovation – combining the sustainable technology of biostimulants, with the precise application of seed treatments.

“As we look for ways to futureproof crop production, there couldn’t be a timelier launch of this exciting new product.”