Echium (Echium vulgare) is a member of the borage family and like borage grows quickly, competing well with weeds. There has been an increase in interest in echium because the oil contains significant amounts of gamma linolenic acid, which is potentially valuable as dietary supplements in products such as nutritional bars, the pharmaceutical industry and skin care products

Echium agronomy information

As echium is a small-seeded crop, it benefits from sowing into a fine, firm seedbed to encourage rapid establishment. Sowing should occur from the end of March through to mid-May on light, dry soils with a pH of 6.5 to 7.5. As flowering is uneven it is necessary to desiccate or swath the crop before harvesting, which occurs from July to August. Trials in America have shown yields of 0.1-0.6t/ha.

Nitrogen should be applied to the seedbed post drilling at a rate of around 50kgN/ha. The crop is not responsive to phosphate and potash therefore maintenance applications should be made. In poor soils, sulphur and magnesium may be required as well as trace elements, such as boron, therefore where the risk is high tissue analysis should be conducted to show deficiencies.

Recommended echium fertiliser programme

echium fertilser recomendations

Agronomy and fertiliser advice
Agronomy and fertiliser advice

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