The HDC has issued a factsheet on winter protection of container grown nursery stock ahead of what forecasters predict will be the worst winter for almost a decade.
ADAS consultant Andrew Hewson said the factsheet, part of a broader project on technology transfer for the HDC, pulls together best practice advice so that growers can protect their stock.
He said: “We have had a succession of mild winters so it is easy to get into a comfort zone and not plan ahead.”
Hewson advised no hard pruning or use of nitrogen fertiliser immediately before the winter. He said building stocks of fleece is a good idea and added that temperatures of –3ºC can kill the roots of plants such as Buxus sempervirens.
He estimated that container stock damages of just five per cent could cost the industry £15m.
The Met Office is predicting a colder winter than those experienced since 1995/96.
# Call ADAS on 01732 848498.
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