This is the name of the guiding theme at DLG-Feldtage 2020, because farming is carried out on the field. Not on just any land, but on the farmer’s land. It is irrelevant here whether the farmer owns the land or leases it. The goal is to enable successful crop production under the given conditions – from establishing the crop stand through to harvesting.
It all depends on the location!
Site conditions play a crucial role.
What soil conditions prevail locally?
What precipitation can be expected?
Or are there any pronounced dry periods in spring or pre-summer?
What fertilising history does the land have, what crop rotation has been carried out and what are the crop protection conditions?
These are all aspects that the farmer has to take into account in his cropping strategy. He holds the sceptre in his hand when it comes to deciding what machinery and farm inputs are to be used.
What tillage method will secure me sufficient moisture for sowing?
What variety will match my crop sequence and what fertilisers should I apply how and when to meet the plant requirements optimally?
Will the crop stand and the soil conditions enable me to make use of mechanical weed control methods, and if not, what strategy should I adopt to avoid resistances to herbicides?
Finally, the farmer also decides when to send the combine harvester or the chopper onto the field to secure the harvest after the crops have been grown with such substantial effort. The other critical parameters alongside the necessary harvesting logistics are then trafficability, water content and the quality of the crop.
Important decision-making aids for the farmer
Machinery and farm input suppliers provide helpful support and assistance to farmers for many of these decisions. Smart technology and powerful machinery make it possible to carry out the work in a timely manner and to treat the soil or the crop gently. The range of fertilisers and crop protection agents available also allow safe and appropriate care, as well as targeted treatment of the crop stands. The necessary application equipment is designed to take this into account.
Furthermore, advisory and consulting institutions can provide support with know-how and expertise in tricky situations and thus facilitate some of the decision-making by the farmer.
It is important in this connection that machinery and equipment, farm inputs and experience gained by third parties can be transferred to the local conditions prevailing at the site of the individual farmer. Only farming adapted to the natural and specific farm structures can secure stable yields now and in the future. Only the farmer can judge what machinery and equipment, what variety and what farm inputs really match the location.
It is his location. It is his crop production.