Palmerston Crop Consultants Meeting Minutes, May 9th, 2012

Synopsis:  Rainfall across the region last week ranged from a trace amount to  75-100 mm down pour in Orangeville-Arthur area. Corn planting ranges from over 90% complete in Huron, Perth counties to 20% on heavy clay and poorly drained soils in areas like Niagara,Peel or Dufferin county. Very little herbicide/fungicide has been applied to wheat and this is the most urgent issue along with second application of N.  Cold weather and frost has slowed growth of hay/pasture fields and caused significant damage to tree fruit crop. Burndown ahead of soybeans is also a priority. CCA credits have been received for meetings.

Wheat: Advanced wheat is GS 31-32(second node) with flag leaf now emerging in few fields. Wheat growth stage is more advanced than what it appears due to slow growth from cold weather in April. Check wheat stage prior to spraying. Wheat appears to have tolerated the freezing temperatures with no reports of freeze injury. For more information refer to May 9th Ridgetown Ag Breakfast minutes. Weed control and fungicide application are high priority.  Chickweed and henbit are flowering and control now will only be to help reduce seed set. Fields with split N application appear to be ‘running out of steam’ and are in need of the second application of N.  Discussion around need to leave time between weed/fungicide application and N application. Concensus was there was no need to delay applications, and generally preferable to apply herbicide/fungicide first as N application could cause more scorch. There is very little disease in the crop, with low level of septoria, very little powdery mildew and one report of rust. Early planted wheat is excellent with thick canopy and fungicide application will likely be highly beneficial. Wheat fields that received heavy blanket of snow is now showing goose necking at ground level. Some expressed concern about potential recovery of this wheat and if it might be a harvest issue (weakened stems) but expert opinion is this should not be an issue.

Cereal Leaf Beetle: Report of cereal leaf beetle egg masses being found (Deb Campbell). For more information refer to 2011 article

Corn:  Corn planting ranges widely from 25-30% in Halton, Peel, Dufferin, 50% in Durham region,  75-80% in Bruce, Peterborough, Kawartha, and 90% in Huron, Perth, Wellington counties.  Planting in Niagara area is only 20% complete and along with Dufferin and areas with heavier soil types need several good days to make signicant progress in planting.Planting corn in mid April now looks like it was a good decision even though this corn has not emerged, but germination appears to be good.  Most corn was planted into excellent soil conditions, and warmer temperatures and soaking rainfall in most areas should allow for rapid emergence of recently planted corn. Pre-emerge herbicides are common in many weed control programs.   

Cold Imbibitional Injury in Corn/Soys: occurs when dry seed absorbs cold water from a cold rain/snow during first 48 hours. Discussion if this is as much an issue today with much improved seed quality over even 10 years ago in terms of genetics and seed treatments. In the past, if corn was not out of ground in 10 days, start to be concerned, but now see corn emerging after 4 weeks of cold weather. This will be an interesting year to review the issue of cold imbibition in both corn and soybeans. Fields to watch will be those planted Sunday April 22nd, ahead of the cold rain/snow the next day.

 Soybeans: Very few soybeans have been planted to date, with big push to occur when soils are fit. Burndown ahead of planting a priority.  Where a residual herbicide is being applied and field is to be minimum tilled (residue manager), check the label for cautions on incorporation. Some residue tillage equipment are too aggressive in incorporating herbicide (eg Guardian) that should not be.  Growers need to cautioned who may decide to forego a burndown herbicide where early vertical tillage is being done in corn stalks.  By the time the soybean crop is ready to be sprayed, these fields could have a big weed problem.  Vertical tillage tools not designed to incorporate ppi herbicides adequately. 

Canola: Early planted canola is now in cotyledon-1st leaf stage. Plant populations are low in some fields but 4-5 plants/sq ft has full yield potential. Western data shows 80% yield potential at population of 2-3 healthy plants/ft2.  Flea beetles are now actively feeding. Striped flea beetles are more tolerant of seed applied insecticides, emerge earlier, and are more aggressive feeders. Threshold is 25% leaf damage.  Seed treatments provide 14-21 days protection, so early planted canola may no longer be protected. One report of hail/freeze damage to canola that required replanting. Most early planted canola survived the 6-7 frosts in April likely because it was hardened off. Later planted canola is emerging in 14-21 days. Weeds are emerging with the canola. One question on soil residual of Broadstrike Dual used in corn last year and canola in 2012.  Label states bioassay and carryover will be higher on higher pH soils.  Canola may emerge okay, but show injury following emergence. No consensus if this would be an issue. 

Agricorp: Last minute rush to meet May 1st deadline for crop insurance and RMP resulted in problems handling volume of calls and on line submissions(no data loss).  Agricorp is now working through backlog. In 2011, RMP was free and coverage was at 100%. In 2012 growers needed to enrol by May 1 and choose coverage level.  Default coverage level is 100% unless they elected otherwise.  Level of coverage cannot be changed after May 1 deadline but growers can opt out by not paying the premium.


  • Dave Hume has done some 12-24 inch soil N testing this spring of fields with history of manure and finding some high levels of N at this depth compared to adjacent non manured fields. Issue is how to interpret results, distribution and uniformity of these N levels in field to give a recommendation.  Could be useful in making modest reductions in N application.


Next Meeting: Tuesday May 22nd, 7:30 am.

Felix Weber’s – Agricoach, Palmerston
[Road 178, 1stroad west of Palmerston on highway 23, #5929]

Confirmation of attendance is not required.

Please direct any questions, comments or agenda items you may have to:

Brian Hall, OMAFRA, Stratford 519-271-0083  or

Ian McDonald, OMAFRA, Guelph 519-824-4120 (ext  5-6707) or