Central Ontario Crop Consultants meeting notes – April 21st 2015


Winter wheat survival has been good in most areas. Nitrogen application varies between 30-40% up to 70-90% in areas to the south. Lots of intentions to apply red clover into wheat, but single cut clover seed is in short supply. Spring cereal planting is 25-40% complete. Agricorp reports only 200 winter wheat damage reports, mostly in southwestern Ontario but in this area, the Belwood-Arthur-Oranageville area is reporting damage. Still some fields of 2014 corn to be harvested.  Remind growers to report any corn that has been harvested. Need to assess forage stands early in order to make timely management decisions. May 1st is deadline to enrol, make changes, additions to crop insurance.


Winter wheat survival  good in most areas. Late planted wheat is still emerging. Wheat survival in the Belwood -Arthur-Orangeville area is having some trouble, poorer survival on on lighter soil types. Nitrogen application to winter wheat in southern area from Huron-Wellington is 70-90% complete. Northern areas are between 30-40% finished. A lot more wheat acres are receiving sulphur, 10 lb S/ac is common either as ammonium thiosulphate (3 gal/ac)  or ammonium sulphate (42 lb/ac).  Acreage of wheat receiving split nitrogen application has increased over last year.  Typical nitrogen rates for soft red are 120 lb N/ac and 140-160 lb N/ ac on hard red.  For a more thorough discussion on nitrogen rates, timing and form in wheat refer to article ‘Wheat Nitrogen Strategies‘  Lots of red clover, mostly single cut that needs to be applied.

Spring cereal planting is 25-40% complete.  C&M is sold out of spring wheat and growers looking for seed will need to check with their dealer.  The nitrogen rate for spring wheat depends on variety and straw strength, field yield potential with 90-110 lb N/ac being quite common.


Very little corn planted to date. Some livestock growers short of straw have been bailing corn stalks this spring. Interest in variable rate seeding in corn and soybeans is higher, especially where growers have purchased new planters that come equipped for variable rate.  Seed companies and dealers are working with growers on conducting in field trials.  Some trials testing populations f 27-37,000 in corn.  Sales of 20″ planters, and strip tillage equipment are both higher. Strong interest in split nitrogen application.


There is more interest in seeding shorter day varieties in order to get winter wheat planted earlier.  Quite a bit of interest in variable rate seeding of soybeans, especially where growers had problems with white mould last year.  There was some discussion that there is still too many acres of soybeans that are being over seeded, impacting both cost and white mould.  Nodulation failures last year in some areas is increasing interest in double inoculation.  There is still some virgin soybean fields, where double innoculants will provide more insurance.


Too early too assess winter survial, but very little frost heaving evident. For information on assessing winter survival refer to article ‘ Check Alfalfa Stands This Spring and Make a Plan” ; http://bit.ly/1DYSn0j  It will be important to assess stands early in order to decide on management options.  Reseeding alfalfa after alfalfa is not recommended due to autotoxicity. However new seedings from last year that winterkilled can be reseeded without an autotoxicity effect. Refer to article ‘Alfalfa Autotoxicity‘ for more information

Nitrogen Management

Lower commodity prices and higher nitrogen costs this spring are helping drive increased interest in both split nitrogen application in corn and use of enhanced N fertlizers like ESN, Agrotain, Agrotain Plus, N-Serve, etc.  There are web based calculators available for estimating volatilization losses from broadcast urea and from manure. for more infromation refer to the links in last years discussion  ‘Central Ontario Crop Consultants – May 6th, 2014 minutes’ 

Crop Insurance Update:

  • Winter wheat damage claims have been low to date. 200 damage reports have been received, mostly in Lambton, Middlesex, Chatham and south Huron area. About 500,000 acres of wheat were insured last fall. Uninsured wheat fields can still be insured up to May 1st once they have been inspected
  • Renewals have been mailed. Need to check it and make any changes by May 1
  • Forage rainfall plan has been changed. Includes 2 coverage plans, one for insufficient rainfall below 85% of long term average and excess rainfall. What is new is that growers can now choose up to 3 rainfall stations instead of one. Agricorp collects rainfall data from about 350 rainfall gauges across Ontario through WIN. There is about a two week delay in posting rainfall data on-line for growers to check. For more information go to ‘Forage Rainfall
  • There are about 200 growers with corn still remaining to be harvested. Grade of corn has generally increased by one grade over winter, except for sample grade corn, that is still testing as sample. Grain moisture testing at 15-18%.
  • Some growers dont realize that Risk Management Program is not tied to Agristability. Agristability is designed to stablilize whole farm income and is a federal program, while RMP is provincial and helps offset losses caused by low market prices. For information on how the two programs work together refer to ‘RMP and Agristability, How they work together
  • Direct deposit; Growers are encouraged to enrol in direct deposit to speed up payments
  • Seeding deadline for Oats and Barley is May 31st for this area and May 15th in areas to south. Planting deadline information can be found on-line at
  • For Oats and Barley the deadline for seeding is May 31th in this area and May 15st further south.  For all planting date deadlines see ‘Planting Deadlines 2015

May 1: New applications and coverage changes

June 15: Last day to report unseeded acreage.

June 30: Spring seeded final acreage reports due.

July 10: Premiums

Bio security in and around Poultry and Hog Farms

The outbreak of Avian influenza in several poultry flocks and procine epidemic diarrhea virus (PED) and PRRS highlight the need to keep bio-security top of mind when travelling  within the quarantine zone for poultry but also in fields around where poultry or swine are housed.

Other Business

  • Quite a few new NMP for dairy, poultry, swine, goats and sheep


Next Meeting: Central Ontario Crop consultants Tues May 5th, 7:30 am, Felix Weber, Palmerston

CropLine – 1-888-449-0937

Field Crop News Website https://fieldcropnews.com/

Please direct any questions, comments or agenda items to

Brian Hall, 519-271-0083 | brian.hall@ontario.ca

Ian McDonald, 519-824-4120 (ext 5-6707), Ian.mcdonald@ontario.ca