April 14, 2015

Malibu Restaurant, Exeter

Chair for this meeting was David Townsend.  Chair for next meeting is Steve Johns.  The meeting on May 12 will be chaired by Eric Richter.

There was an excellent turnout to the first meeting of the 2015 growing season. Thank you to all those who attended and participated in the lively discussion. The next meeting will be on April 28th starting at 7:00 am for breakfast (meeting starts at 7:30). Meetings finish no later than 9:00 am.

Synopsis: Field work has been limited but fertilizer application should be well underway by the end of the week.  Some spring wheat has been seeded.  Seed sales for spring cereals have been robust and many are sold out.  There is more interest in spring wheat further south than usual this year.  Canola acreage will be down.  Corn acreage will be the same as last year or may even be up in some areas, weather permitting.  Soybean acreage and edible bean acres will likely be up.  Large seeded edible beans are sold out.  A few fields could have already been planted to corn (Dashwood area) but growers have held off.  It’s estimated that 50% of winter wheat acreage will be under seeded with red clover but some areas are down considerably (Granton).  There is tremendous interest in seeding cover crops once the wheat is harvested this summer.  There is also more talk of seeding cover crops into established corn this year.  The interest in soil health and cover crops continues to grow.  Most of the wheat has not received nitrogen yet.  Many wheat fields look good but late planted fields will take some time before they can be properly assessed.  Agricorp is receiving only a trickle of calls on damaged wheat right now.  There are still growers with corn in the field and those that have just harvested.  Please report yields as soon as possible to Aricorp.  Average farm yields and other details cannot be finalized with Agricorp until this corn is harvested.  For Oats and Barley the deadline for seeding is May 15th in this area and May 31st further north.  For all planting date deadlines see: http://www.agricorp.com/SiteCollectionDocuments/PID-PlantingDates-FallGandO-en.pdf

Wheat: Agricorp reports that about 500 000 acres of winter wheat are insured this year. Overall the winter wheat crop is in decent shape, but growers will probably leave even variable stands because of the high price of straw.  Field drainage has been key to wheat survival.  Late planted fields are in tougher shape.  In most cases it’s still too early to decide how many plants will survive.  Wait before making any decisions.  Is it getting too late to apply red cover?  Experience has shown that red clover has been successfully seeded well into May.  Stand establishment is highly dependent on the weather (moisture). Generally success starts to decline as seeding is delayed into May.

Glyphosate Resistance: Peter Sikkema (U of G) gave an excellent synopsis on glyphosate resistant weeds in Ontario. Canada fleabane has now been found all the way from Essex county to Glengarry county. It has spread 800 km in 4 years. Glyphosate resistant waterhemp has been found in the northwest corner of Kent county. Glyphosate resistant common ragweed is present in Essex county and will likely soon be confirmed in Kent county. Infinity herbicide is the best choice available for the control of fleabane in winter wheat. 2,4-D will likely cause injury to the wheat. Control in soybeans is the real challenge and results have been variable from field to field. Glyphosate plus Eragon plus metribuzin have given more consistent control compared to just Glyphosate plus Eragon. There are no in-season herbicide control options that work in soybeans for resistant fleabane. Tillage must be very aggressive to do anything on fleabane but fall herbicide application on the corn stalks can go a long way to reduce pressure. An article on the control of glyphosate resistant giant ragweed can be found at: http://fieldcropnews.com/2012/10/24-d-ester-now-registered-for-use-pre-plant-in-soybean-to-control-glyphosate-resistant-giant-ragweed/

Soybeans: Soybean acreage has increased considerably over the last few years.  This year over 3.2 million acres may be seeded. The IP sector also continues to grow.  There will be many soybeans following soybeans especially on clay soys in 2015.  Some estimates suggest up to 1.0 million acres could be soybeans following soybeans. Interestingly, last year growers reported higher yields in soybeans following soybeans compared to soybeans following corn.  This is likely explained by the weather since poor rotations do not suffer as much yield loss during good growing seasons.  Last year was wetter and cooler than normal.  In a normal year yield losses of 10-15% can be expected from soybeans following soybeans with an additional 10% yield loss if soybeans are grown for 3 years in a row.  Subsequent year’s yields will plateau.  Soybeans should not be grown following soybeans if white mould or soybean cyst nematode are an issue in the field.  In those cases yield losses can be very high.  If a lot of soybeans are grown in the rotation the following management practices can help with yields; fungicide/insecticide seed treatments, tillage, and foliar fungicides.  None of these practices are a replacement for a good crop rotation.  Too many soybeans in the rotation will result in lower yields and soil degradation.  Potassium deficiency is a major concern in Ontario, as soil test values continue to decline.

Corn: Corn acreage is expected to be about the same as last year or may even be higher depending on the weather. Over wintering corn has stood up relatively well although considerable acreage has lodged over the last week. (Palmerton area) Quality has improved with one grade improvement over the fall being reported by growers.  About 80% of growers are happy they left out the corn over winter.  However, the economics were not necessary better than harvesting wet corn in the fall.  Some yield loss along with lower prices this spring has meant the bottom line is about the same.

Proposed Regs on Neonics:  There was discussion on the proposed neonic regs that have been posted on the Environmental Registry for public comment.  The industry feels that the proposed regulation is not workable.  If a grower needed to use a neonic seed treatment to control insects it would be almost impossible to meet the requirements as they are currently written.  The public comment period ends on May 7th. To leave your comments on the regs please see:  http://www.ebr.gov.on.ca/ERS-WEB-External/displaynoticecontent.do?noticeId=MTI0NjI4&statusId=MTg3NjY4

Crop Insurance: Please consider signing up for direct deposit with Agricorp and sign up for on-line services. Renewals were sent out yesterday. Please review renewals once they are received.

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

CropLine – 1-888-449-0937

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

Stratford Crop Technology Contacts:

Horst Bohner, 519-271-5858 or horst.bohner@ontario.ca

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