Weeds, Pests and Diseases
Weed control is best undertaken during seedbed preparation.
There are a number of pests which attack turnips from sowing through to maturity. Flea beetle are the main risk during establishment. continue monitoring the crop until the risk has subsided.
As with all other brassicas, club root is the main disease problem, best avoided by keeping to a good crop rotation leaving at least three clear years between crops. Attacks of mildew on the leaves will reduce yield and may affect the crops palatability when grazed.
Most fodder turnips are grazed in situ. Stock should have access to a grass runback or hay/silage during feeding. It is advisable to use an electric fence to control intake and reduce waste.
White fleshed , autumn varieties can be ready for grazing after 12-15 weeks, the yellow fleshed winter types 16-20 weeks.
Yellow fleshed maincrop turnips can be lifted and stored in a clamp, always make sure the roots carry as little soil as possible and reject any damaged roots as they may introduce fungal diseases.
Typical Yields / Feed Quality
|Average dry matter yield||5.5 – 6 tonnes/ha|
|Average fresh yield||60 – 65 tonnes/ha|
|Dry matter||8 – 10%|
|Crude protein||15 – 17%|
|Metabolisable energy||10 – 11 MJ/kg DM|
Data source: Advanta product guide 2004