Co-Author: Scott Banks
Winter cereals are moving forward slowly with the cool temperatures. Cold nights in low heat unit areas (-5oC) continued to stress the crop and show tip burn on leaves. A few more November acres have been targeted for replant with insufficient stand establishment to qualify for crop insurance. Manganese (Mn) deficiency is more prevalent than normal due to extremely dry soils: spray to correct. Disease pressure remains low, with mildew beginning in advanced fields. Cool temperatures and high winds have resulted in the majority of the crop waiting to be sprayed for weed control and/or with early fungicides. This is the correct choice, as later fungicide applications increase yield more than early applications. It is too late in advanced fields to worry about dandelion, chickweed or other winter annual weed control. The damage is done. Advanced spring cereals are at the 4 leaf stage. Herbicides should be applied as soon as weeds emerge and temperatures allow. There is insufficient growth in these fields to consider a fungicide application: weed control and early fungicides applications are best split if weed pressure is high and maximum yields are desired.