Ridgetown Ag Breakfast Meeting Minutes – May 31, 2016

Ridgetown Ag Breakfast Meeting Minutes – May 31, 2016

Breakfast Sponsor: Thanks from the group to “Chris Robson, DuPont-Pioneer“

Synopsis:  The quote of the week comes from Alan McCallum, “How can the clays be so dry and wet at the same time!”

Rains have been very sporadic since the last meeting which ranged from none\trace to 2+ inches in north Lambton.  All are in agreement a rain would be nice and cracks in the clay soils are in mid-season form. The effectiveness of pre-emergent herbicides has been reduced on fields that received little (<10 mm) or no rainfall after application; therefore, it is important to scout fields to assess control and plan follow-up treatments, especially during the critical period of weed interference for both corn and soybean.  Corn planting is completed and emergence is good.  The heat has really pushed corn (weeds as well) development over the past week.  Corn N side-dressing has started.  Soybean planting will be completed this week and emergence in the southwest has been good, although some limited replanting may occur in some fields, mostly clays.  Stripe rust in the area increased significantly and many fields with a very susceptible variety required a fungicide application. As of May 31, many winter wheat fields in the Ridgetown are within the timing window for managing Fusarium head blight timing with a fungicide.

Winter Wheat:  The winter wheat crop continues to look very good although some stress from the dry conditions has been observed.  Most of the crop is in head and flowering which is the stage for FHB fungicide application.  Timing and staging is critical so it is important to scout.  Stripe rust symptoms have increased over the past two weeks– not only in Essex but can be found in most areas of southwestern Ontario.  The severity depends on infection timing and variety susceptibility.  Areas north and around London have stripe rust as well.  FHB fungicide applications will provide foliar leaf disease control including stripe rust.  Spring wheat producers need to be aware of stripe rust symptoms and if necessary access the need for a fungicide application.  Fields which have had a recent (flag leaf or later) fungicide application for stripe rust could wait until Day +4 or +5 for a fungicide application targeting FHB.  Growers are advised to scout their fields, note variety susceptibility, weather forecast and as well as DONcast to best coordinate need for FHB fungicide application at flowering.  Dave Hooker reminded the group of the importance application technology has on FHB fungicide efficacy.  Factors such as wind speed/direction, boom height, droplet size (nozzle), water volume, pressure and wheat growth stage are critical to maximize FHB control (FHB Fungicide Application Checklist)  A Wheat Fungicide Decision Tree article can be found on the Field Crop News Website.  This article was put together by extension pathologists from Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Ontario.

Most other wheat diseases are still at low levels but viruses such as wheat spindle streak, soil borne and wheat streak mosaic viruses are noticeable in the region.  Frost damaged wheat from earlier in the month survived but there are reports from the Port Colbourne area of wheat being replanted to soybeans as a result of frost injury.  Sulphur deficiency continues to be apparent in many fields.  As discussed in the last Ridgetown meeting minutes (May 17, 2016), there are several reasons we could be seeing more deficiency this.  Head snag in wheat has also been reported and can be variety specific. Cereal leaf beetle has been detected and should be scouted for.

Weeds:  Dry conditions have had an impact on pre-emergent herbicide activation therefore it is important to scout fields to assess control and plan follow-up treatments.   Peter Sikkema discussed some of the problems weed calls he has had recently.  In terms of horsetail control, post emergent Broadstrike + MCPA up to 4-leaf corn and in soybeans preplant Roundup + Dual + Broadstrike.  Postemergent horsetail in soybeans IS very difficult.   For EASTERN BLACK NIGHTSHADE in dry beans, Prowl + Frontier + Pursuit + Permit but make sure you know the market class since some clasess such as white and blacks maybe more susceptible to certain herbicides.  For PREPLANT CONTROL OF Canada fleabane in SOYBEAN apply Roundup + Eragon + SENCOR + Merge.

Mike Schryver provided an update on his waterhemp graduate thesis work.   Of the 35 waterhemp population’s he has screened to date (70% complete) – 100% were resistant to group 2 herbicies, 74% resistant to Group 5 and 74% resistant to Group 9.  These results reflect 70% of the populations he has collected.  Previous updates can be found in the May17 minutes.  The group 15 and 27 herbicides are good options for control.

Corn: Commercial corn is planted. Seed corn is 90% planted and pre-emergent herbicide issues have been noticed in seed corn as well.  Corn overall looks good and many attendees noted stands look impressive and between V2-V4 growth stages.  When making decisions on replanting corn, consult the Ontario Corn Replant Decision Aid, an Excel file that can be downloaded at https://fieldcropnews.com/2012/05/ontario-corn-replant-decision-aid/.

Dave Hooker noted the high temperatures have allowed corn to grow quickly and is close to last year’s phenomenal stage of development on many fields.  Nitrogen side-dressing has begun and many noted not a lot of PSNT sampling has been occurring in the area.   Discussion continued around time of corn plant emergence and impact on yield, that was mainly spurred on by  Randy Dowdy’s  talk at SWAC in January.  There has been some excellent research by University of Guelph on plant-plant variability of corn over the past several years.  Dave Hooker, Bob Thirlwall, Jason VanMaanen, Peter Johnson and Richard Anderson are monitoring corn plant-to-plant variability in several fields, starting at emergence, and will track the corn development through to maturity and harvest individual ears on a per-plant basis.  We wish to assemble this information into a database and analyze the data at the end of the season.  If you wish to participate in this experiment, a protocol will be posted shortly on Field Crop News along with a spreadsheet template, or simply contact Dave Hooker (dhooker@uoguelph.ca) for the information.

Soybeans: Soybean planting is completed and very little replanting to date but some cold imbibition may have occurred a few weeks ago (still being assessed).  With the early wheat this year, there was discussion around double cropping soybeans.  In the southwest, soybeans planted into moisture on July 1st can yield 30 bushels/acre, but expect a one bu/ac/day yield reduction when planted after July 1st.  Some points to consider:  soybean maturity should be 0.5-1.0 MG less than full-season (100-200 CHU) to reduce risk for frost injury late in the season, use high seeding rates (200-225,000 seeds/ac), narrow rows (<15”) and achieve a wheat stubble height (4” min to 10” max).  Remember the key factor is planting early and into moisture.  The chance of a crop with a favorable economical return is less than 50% if soybean is planted after July 10th or if dry conditions are unfavorable for establishment with an earlier seeding.

Alfalfa:  First cut started and alfalfa weevil has been reported in Ridgetown, Thamseville and Glencoe areas.  Cutting will remove the insect but new growth should be scouted for re-emergence of the weevil.  New seeding doing well.  Some alfalfa lodged in areas which had heavy rains such as Plattsville.

Horticultural Crops – Tomatoes look good but the dry conditions are affecting plants on heavy clay soils.  The dry conditions have also impacted preplant herbicides and some weeds such as lamb’s-quarters and hairy nightshade increasing.  Sugarbeets are planted and doing well.

Agricorp: For the 2-week period from May 17/2016 to May 30/2016, there were approximately 90 Damage Reports recorded for around 8,600 acres.

Crop Loss Assessments and IPM Course- A Field Crop News article to assist in “Stand Loss Assessments for Ontario’s Neonic Regulations” by Tracey Baute, OMAFRA Field Crop Entomologist can be found at: field crop news articles on crop loss assessments.  IPM certification courses free until August 31, 2016 and more information can be found at IPMcertfied.ca or call 1-866-225-9020.

Albert Tenuta (albert.tenuta@ontario.ca) is looking for powdery mildew and stripe rust samples from wheat fields which have not been sprayed. If you have or know of cooperators, please contact Albert.  Thank-you!

Next Meeting: Ridgetown Agribusiness meetings are held in the Willson Hall Campus Centre (downstairs) at the University of Guelph Ridgetown Campus. Meetings start at 7:15 with breakfast and every two weeks on Tuesdays.  Next meeting is Tuesday, June 14, 2016.

Upcoming Events

Southwest Crop Diagnostic Days (UG Ridgetown Campus) July 6 or 7, 2016 REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN AND FILLING UP QUICKLY SO DON’T WAIT! REGISTER TODAY! at www.diagnosticdays.ca

FarmSmart Expo 2016 (University of Guelph, Elora Research Station) – July 14, 2016

Eastern Crop Diagnostic Day (U. of G., Winchester Research Farm) – July 28, 2016

Southwest Agricultural Conference – January 4 & 5, 2017