Simcoe Ag Breakfast Meeting Notes – April 22, 2015

Synopsis:   April 1 to April 20 at Simcoe 102 CHU have been accumulated and average temperature was 7.5o C .  Official CHU recording begins May 1st.   39.9 mm of precipitation fell as rain and/or snow.  Crops that have been planted into plastic are being protected against forecast snow and freezing temperatures.  Cool conditions over past few weeks have resulted in very little corn planting and field preparations are occurring  as soil conditions permit.

The difference in growth between early and late planted wheat continues to be obvious.  Where no nitrogen has been applied to date, split applications are being switched to full N application.

April 22 is Earth Day and April 19-25 is National Soil Conservation Week within the International Year of Soil.   “Have you squeezed your soil today?” Ask growers about their plans to improve their soil quality. Written down plans have a greater chance of being executed.

Neonicatinoid Regulation Overview – Industry needs to encourage anyone impacted by the potential regulation (crop producers) to read the proposed regulation and consider responding to the public consultation process – EBR (Environmental Bill of Rights) before the May 7th deadline. Contact information below : All comments on the proposal must be directed to:     or

Public Consultation
MOECC – Strategic Policy Branch
77 Wellesley St W. Floor 11 – Ferguson Block,  Toronto, M7A 2T5

Relevant Highlights of Proposed Neonicotinoid Regulation  (Summarized by Susan Fitzgerald for CCA’s).
• A treated seed will be deemed a NEW Class 12 pesticide if it is a corn or soybean seed that is treated with imidacloprid, clothianidin or thiamethozam. This is only in Ontario, no other provinces.
A pest assessment report must include:
o The acreage and location of the farm unit (a farm unit is based on each land registry property);
o Confirmation that pest assessment guidelines were followed and pests meet or exceed the threshold stated in the Pest Assessment Guidelines;
o A sketch of the farm unit showing each location where a pest was detected and location and acreage where the treated seed will be used;
o Date of pest assessment, name of person doing the assessment, and method used.

• The pest assessment methods are based on OMAFRA recommendations not peer reviewed research results.
• Before August 31, 2016 any person can do the pest assessment (including the grower).
• After August 31, 2016, the pest assessment must be completed by someone deemed a “professional pest advisor”. This requirement will be phased-in by adding one provincial region per year beginning with Northern and Eastern Ontario, then Central Ontario, and Southwestern Ontario.
• Any CCA who works for a company that manufactures or sells seed treatment or treated seed either directly to a grower or to another company/individual who then sells to a grower is not able to be a pest assessor. That covers at least 75% of Ontario CCAs.
• Each year, all pest assessment reports have to be submitted by the seed vendor to the provincial government as of August 30th for the preceding 12 months.
• Growers wishing to purchase treated seed and treated seed vendors will have to take a training course.
• Vendors must ensure the grower has taken the course, provides a proper pest assessment, record each sale of treated seed including the date, volume and number of acres on which used, and keep all documentation for at least four years.
• Vendors must also offer untreated seed for sale.
• Each year, vendors have to submit a report to the provincial government stating which products they sold (each hybrid listed separately), concentration of seed treatment used, total mass/volume sold, total number of acres on which it was used.

• Binbrook area – 20 mm warm rain  in past week – has resulted in everything greening up
• Fisherville area – 50 mm rain over past week
• CoCoRaHS website:  (Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network) mass weather information gathered by volunteers across the nation that collect weather data.

Over 8,800 participants in on-line weather reporting help to show precipitation patterns across N. America

Crop Insurance: Agricorp Important dates:
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: Premium payments due

• Early planted winter wheat looks relatively good, however later planted crops look tough and variable, however the roots are white and growing point looks healthy. Protected area (hillsides) are further along in growth than exposed areas.
o Opposite of normal; wheat planted to recommended depth into heavy soils is having more problems while shallow planted wheat is looking better
• Larger growers have all their N applied to wheat crops,
• All wheat acres 30 to 40% have full N applied
• Fields getting first N is generally getting the full shot
• Early applied N has had positive affect on the crop and did not get lost this year (denitrification or volatilization)
• Straw prices are very strong since wheat acres are down. 6 to 7¢ in the swath is not uncommon so far. Highest price heard to date was 20¢. At 11¢/lb, the straw value becomes higher than grain value.
Winter Barley – Late planted winter barley is looking tough
Rye – 50 % of the crop has nitrogen applied and looks very good.
• Chickweed in rye crops is looking very healthy
Spring Cereals – 100 % of oats – including oats grown as cover crop – should have fungicide application to prevent crown rust
Planting Intentions:
• Soys up about 8%
• Corn up about 2-4 %
• Spring cereals up (a lot) – availability is an issue as spring cereals are sold out (some being brought in from the west)
• Canola down (a lot) – due to Swede Midge and other production issues
Old Crop Corn:
• Kernel integrity of spring harvested corn is excellent – 14 – 15% moisture range and up to a 2 grade improvement for mature corn, compared to fall harvest.
• Spring harvested corn and wind-affected corn from last fall will make this a good year to plan graminicide herbicides to control volunteer corn
Corn in Storage – Even where everything has been done correctly – grain dried to 13%; Corn coming out of storage has the past few weeks has some quality issues.  Corn is difficult to move – corn stops running – black kernels are hot spots in the bin have developed due to moisture rebound from high moisture last fall. The hot spots continue to “grow”. Everyone needs to check their bins – don’t want to find out later when spoilage is worse. BIN SAFETY is extremely important when entering bins to check or deal with spoiled corn. Please be careful and take extra precautions. A “must see” video on U-tube called “In An Instant (Mar 2 2015).
New Corn:
• First corn has been planted into good conditions (snow in forecast for tomorrow (April 23)
• N application for corn – more split applications planned. Some N applied at planting with followup application at 5-6 leaf stage although some growers are planning to wait and try application at 8-10 leaf stage .
• New version of N spring side-dress test has been adapted to fields with some early season nitrogen applied.
Alfalfa – Very little heaving this winter/spring – alfalfa crops look healthy so far
Fruit and Vegetable crops:
• 500 acres of potatoes planted
• Sweet corn and zucchini planted under plastic
• Fruit trees being sprayed
• Some grapes hit hard again with winter cold weather
Weeds/Weed Control:
• Question posed about pre-emerge vs post emerge weed control in corn. Consensus from group that pre-emerge is the preferred, but when timing becomes an issue it’s good to have post options in place. Traditionally it is about 50-50 pre vs post. Regardless of method, the goal should be early weed control.
• Chickweed thick this spring – especially in rye fields.
• Coltsfoot blooming along gravelly areas/ditches and Dandelions buds appearing – will be flowering in about a week
• Glyphosate resistant fleabane control message needs to be consistent – since there appear to be many misinformed people
o Glyphosate plus Eragon plus metribuzin have given more consistent control compared to just Glyphosate plus Eragon. Metribuzin at 0.4 kg/ha active gives the best control. On sands with less than 2% organic matter, watch the metribuzin rate – maybe reduce to 0.25 kg/ha to reduce crop damage, but also reduces the fleaban control. 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. More information can be found on field crop news.
o Fleabane control in cereals: Peter Sikkema’s research indicates that Infinity is the best herbicide to control fleabane in winter wheat as it provides good control and is easy on the wheat. 2,4-D will cause some injury to the wheat. Target is not recommended on wheat as research has shown up to a 20 bu/ac yield loss. If red clover has been underseeded in the wheat, 0.4 L/ac MCPA Ester after harvest will wilt the clover temporarily but not kill it, and will prevent the fleabane from going to seed. Fleabane management should begin in the fall, with glyphosate and Eragon preplant or preemerge, or Infinity post emerge in the fall, if the burndown is not possible. Refine is not recommended in wheat if red clover has been underseeded. MCPA will provide about 70% control and Buctril 50-60% control. Do not use Infinity on oats: Infinity gives about 50% control of wild oats. However, there is no residual for cover crop oats planted after Infinity has been spring applied to a wheat crop.

The next meeting will be held May 8th at Little River Inn (Best Western) Simcoe at 7:30 am