Field Conditions

As the spring of 2024 and the planting season come to an end, most of the province has crops that offer lots of yield potential. There is a lot of variability in planting dates and soil conditions which means the crops are widely variable in populations, leaf staging, and growth. Some areas continue to struggle to get planting done and unseeded acres will occur in various areas, mostly where heavy textured soils and continued rainfall have persisted throughout the spring.  June 30th is final deadline for reporting acreage to Agricorp. 


Weekly rainfalls in areas of heavy textured soils continued to impact corn planting through the beginning of last week. Progress was made, but not as much as those trying to get additional acres in likely wanted.

Crop growth varies widely within and between fields. Early planted corn has mostly filled in the canopy and the earliest corn is at or above shoulder height. Fields planted in the last week are just emerging. The continued wet weather with vary wide ranges of rainfall levels means soils are saturated to dry depending on the region and soil type.

Most nitrogen has or is being applied as weather permits. Yellowish corn from last week may have been caused by “wet feet” which halted crop growth and prevented roots from taking up nutrients. With the recent heat and substantial growth, much of the crop has now turned dark green.

Pre-emerge herbicide programs worked well on most acres, but their residual activity is coming to an end. Where the canopy has not closed, some new weed seedlings may be emerging. Where the rows are canopied and sunlight diminished, new weed flushes are unlikely. With the prevalence of resistant and multi-mode of action resistance, letting late weeds survive and reach seed set is not recommended.

Early planted corn is likely to be tall this year. If canopies continue to stay wet through flowering and grain fill, disease scouting will be important. Fungicide applications to protect the leaves and ears are important when disease pressure is expected to be high. Keep scouting for tar spot.

Figure 1. No-till corn planted into wheat stubble. Photo taken June 25, 2024 near Warkworth in Northumberland County.

Figure 1. No-till corn planted into wheat stubble. Photo taken June 25, 2024 near Warkworth in Northumberland County.


There have been many replants on soybeans, mostly on heavy textured soils where insects and crusting were a problem, and on no-till or reduced till fields with slugs damage. There is no control product for slugs. Although some growers have had to replant, most will not abandon the other advantages of no-till soybeans, assuming they are managing their residue well through the combine in the fall.

Fungicide applications are coming on fast. Many early planted fields are flowering. There has been a significant amount of soybeans planted the last two weeks, which have emerged rapidly because of the heat last week. Despite lots of ground being worked and planted when still too wet, the frequent rainfalls have kept soil moist allowing for good emergence.

With the wheat still ahead of schedule in many areas, those further south are still considering second crop soybeans. For further information refer to this episode of Soybean School.

The communication about managing the many options in herbicide programs in soybeans this year has been effective.

Figure 2. Row cleaner used to push corn residue away from where soybeans planted. Photo taken June 25, 2024 near Warkworth in

Figure 2. Row cleaner used to push corn residue away from where soybeans planted. Photo taken June 25, 2024 near Warkworth in Northumberland County. 


Winter barley harvest has begun and will continue across southern Ontario as the weather allows. Some growers are having challenges with marketing their grain. Before planting, growers are encouraged to have a marketing plan in place.

Winter wheat continues to be ahead of schedule with harvest planned to start in southern Ontario before the weekend, weather permitting. Most of the crop has great yield potential. Some lodging has occurred in areas that have received heavy rains or hail. Fields that received high Nitrogen (N) rates and no plant growth regulator (PGR) or that have a history of manure are experiencing lodging as well.

T2 and T3 fungicide applications have done a good job of protecting against stripe rust infections. Observations from breeding plots are showing tremendous response to fungicides on both moderately and poorly resistant varieties. The lesson of this year is that fungicides should continue to be a standard practice for wheat production, particularly when disease risk is high.

 Spring cereals continue to look excellent overall. Fungicide applications are being applied to oats that are at flag leaf and early boot stages to protect against crown rust. T3 fungicide applications in spring wheat are also being made to protect against fusarium head blight.


Winter canola harvest has begun in Essex County and the crop is at or near pre-harvest herbicide timing in other regions of the southwest.  Winter canola harvest often overlaps with winter wheat harvest but for some, the canola may be harvested first this year.  If seeking advice on canola harvest, please refer to this article!

Spring canola has bolted or is just starting to flower in the earlier planted fields.

Edible Beans

The vast majority of beans are planted, and recent plantings emerged quickly when temperatures were high. Most were able to get their residual herbicide program applications made so the crop should be off to a great start. However, where there has been a lot of rain stands are patchy.


Frequent rains have made it difficult to dry first cut hay. Yields are good but delayed cutting and rain on cut hay has lowered quality.

The moist conditions and warmth and humidity are gearing up to provide a high yield potential for second cut.


For Production Insurance coverage, crop planting deadline is June 30th for soybeans. The deadline for reporting actual acres of spring-seeded grains and oilseeds or new forages is June 30th. The unseeded acreage coverage provides one-third of a farm’s average farm yield if a crop is not planted by the planting deadline. Growers are encouraged to report acres as soon as possible to avoid busy times at the deadline.

Reporting can be done online or by calling the Guelph office (+1 888-247-4999).


Spring cereals should be scouted for both armyworm larvae and cereal leaf beetle larvae as populations begin to decline in winter wheat.

As winter wheat harvest begins, pay attention for signs of spider mites moving into soybeans and dry beans. Scout field perimeters first, turning leaves over and looking for signs of webbing or mites.

Storm fronts have brought in potato leafhoppers. Scouting is advised in forages and dry beans. Scouting techniques and thresholds are available on Ontario CropIPM.

Ticks are very prevalent and scouts and all should be aware of and checking themselves for ticks. If found engorged, immediate medical intervention is important!

Sprayer Operators

This crew is exhausted right across the province and should be thanked by all for their dedication to getting a difficult and busy season behind us. Spray rigs were under pressure to address corn herbicides and nitrogen and soybean herbicides, cereal fungicides and some insecticides in a very condensed window and there have been very few mistakes or complaints. Thanks to you all!

Upcoming Events

July 3rd & 4th – Southwest Diagnostic Days, Ridgetown Campus, University of Guelph. Register before June 25th here. 

July 4th – Forage Expo West, Gorrie, ON. No pre-registration required. Find more information here  

July 11th – Weeds Tour, Elora Research Station. Register here before July 4th.  

July 10th & 11th – Eastern Ontario Crop Diagnostic Days, Winchester Research Station. Register before July 2nd here 

July 12th – Forage Expo East, St. Isidore. No pre-registration is required. Find more information here.  

July 25th – 27th – Northwest International Ag Expo, Emo, ON. Find more info & register here. 

August 27th – Soil Health Day, Sunderland Co-op Oakwood. Registration is available here

Upcoming agricultural events across the province can be found on OMAFA’s Dateline calendar

Weather Summary: Thursday June 20 to Wednesday June 26, 2024

LocationHighest Temp (°C)Lowest Temp (°C)Rain for Week (mm)Rain Since April 1st (mm)GDD0C April 1stGDD5C April 1stCHU May 1st
10 YR Norm (11-20)27.614.536.2273.312257921189
10 YR Norm (11-20)26.913.918.9228.411427121101
10 YR Norm (11-20)27.513.736.8256.710966691037
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)26.813.629.7259.611236961078
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.812.926.6224.2999582937
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.811.526.7249.0993580948
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.512.240.9253.1977571939
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.210.925.4240.5952549912
10 YR Norm (11-20)26.410.420.5238.51005590954
10 YR Norm (11-20)26.812.421.0237.910536401013
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.810.825.8223.0855502856
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.49.322.2202.1785454796
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.38.430.4232.2752399701
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.27.728.7216.8712370678
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.79.424.7215.9821460816
Weather Summary compiled by OMAFRA using Environment Canada weather station data provided by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Data quality is verified but accuracy is not guaranteed and should be used for general information purposes only.

Ag Breakfast Meeting Minutes

Ridgetown – Tuesday, June 25th


  • Lots of fieldwork done over past week before rains came.
  • Still some planting to occur in various pockets on heavier clay soils – particularly around Glencoe. area. Estimates of 10-15% of soybeans left to plant in those areas, most other areas are completed. 


  • Variable crop conditions depending on location and planting date. 
  • Some tough looking fields on clay ground, and excellent looking fields on sandier soils. 
  • Nutrient deficiencies are continuing to appear, especially Zn, Mn, and Mg. This is most  likely transient, when root growth can expand past smeared sidewalls or compacted layers, nutrient uptake and plant conditions will likely rebound. 
  • Shovel is critical for identifying root issues. It is not always a nutrient issue. For example, wireworms have been observed to cause root injury reducing nutrient uptake.  
  • Tissue testing can help, but interpretation is important. Compare good and poor areas, and soil test recommended as well.  
  • Josh Nasielski of University of Guelph has published a research article on N sidedress in corn and minimizing losses through volatilization. Some key notes: 
  • ~25% of N in topdressed urea volatilized, compared to ~5% with UAN.
  • Use of inhibitors reduced losses, especially with urea. Injecting UAN (and ensuring slot closure) is best possible scenario for reduced losses. 
  • Large rainfalls (2-3”) are required to reduce volatilization losses post-application. Small rainfalls or wet soils with dry weather are worst-case scenario. 
  • Read the article located here: 


  • Rapid emergence on beans planted last week – up in 5 days. There are variable crop conditions.
  • Reports of thin but relatively consistent soybean stands in fields. Populations of 60, 000 to 80,000 in some spots, with 100,000 plants per acre throughout field.
  • Some soybeans still trying to push through but running out of steam. 
  • Some reports of best stand of beans ever on clay farms.
  • Concerns of nodulation potential for soybeans planted into fields originally fertilized with nitrogen for corn. Likely not an issue but should monitor for active nodules through season.
  • For advice on making double crop soybeans work: 


  • Winter barley harvest has begun. 
  • Winter wheat harvest to begin in Essex this week, weather pending. 
  • About 300 GDD ahead of normal in Essex, 200 ahead in Ridgetown. 
  • Reports of Mn deficiency appearing in oats, potentially S deficiency as well. 
  • Recommended to apply foliar Mn as soon as possible, should expect large response. 
  • Fusarium Head Blight infection appearing more and more, but still quite regional where it is very heavy. 
  • Stripe rust, stem rust, and leaf rust are all appearing now, with huge differences depending on whether the field received a fungicide application. 
  • Harvest prioritization: 
    • Focus on grain moisture, ignore the green straw. 
    • As soon as grain is ready, get it out of the field – pay the drying charge rather than take a downgrade. 
    • Start with any lodged fields and Fusarium Head Blight (FHB) susceptible varieties. 
    • DON can climb quickly the longer after reaching maturity.


Weed Control

  • Wild carrot is much more prevalent this year. 
  • Group 2 herbicides are go to for control in corn and soybeans. 
  • Lots of glyphosate-resistant Canada fleabane in winter wheat fields. They should not set seed before combining but will need control post-harvest. Once cut, it “will regrow very angrily” – Dale Cowan. 
  • Dr. Peter Sikkema has reported injury stemming from too many additives into a tank-mix of a Group 27 herbicide in corn. The additives have caused injury and longer-lasting stunting compared to a check without the additives. Caution is urged when trying to apply too many products in a single mix, as it can add more stress to the crop. 

Cobourg – Tuesday, June 25th

Despite the spring we are closing out, the crops for the most part look good. The job now is to preserve the yield potential by managing it well to the finish.

Weed Control and Pesticide Applications

  • It has been tough to get equipment into fields in a timely manner. A lot of big weeds have been controlled better than expected, likely because the weeds remained lush and actively growing and taking up the herbicide.
  • This season has shown that weed control programs must look beyond the individual crop to the whole system.
  • The hot weather during post-emergence corn herbicide timing resulted in some quick changes in product choice due to the high temperatures.
  • Some of the old chemistries have resurfaced to address both the spring conditions and the resistance issues that continue to evolve.
  • Lots of sprayers have got stuck which has just added to the stress of a tough spring.
  • Small field sizes in the region make wide boom sprayer efficiency poorer and adds time and wear on equipment.
  • Pest traps to date in the region are showing low to no catches of various flying insects like western bean cutworm, etc.
  • Lots of insects found early but the crop for the most part seems to have weathered the pressure.

Unseeded Acres and Crop Conditions

  • Despite the tough spring, for the most part the conditions allowed farmers to get crops planted into better conditions than maybe expected and not too delayed compared to normal, but there is lots of variability.
  • Due to both planting timeliness and unevenness of moisture in fields, variability is widespread in all spring seeded crops.
  • The continued damp conditions throughout the extended planting season have meant crusting conditions were mostly avoided


  • The continued conditions and weather have us on high alert for disease development.
  • Many fungicides are preventative and need to be applied before symptoms develop.
  • Timing is based on weather conditions, crop stage, and presence of disease in the area.


  • First soybean flowers seen over the weekend. Consider fungicide treatment to protect the yield potential.
  • Timing for fungicide applications is quickly approaching and should be closely monitored and with the present wet conditions, 2 applications may be necessary which is not standard practice for the area.


  • Mostly good stands, but quite uneven within and between fields.
  • A lot of post-plant nitrogen applications are underway.

Winter Wheat

  • Maturing quickly and expectations for early start to harvest.
  • Timely T2 and 3 sprays stopped strip rust east of Lindsay and fusarium looks under control but need to monitor due to the continued wet conditions.


  • Dairy first cut haylage is finished. Making dry or wrapped hay without rainfall continues to be a struggle.
  • Hay quantity is good, but quality will be down for the most part.

Mt. Forest – Wednesday, June 26th


This area covers a wide geography and thus soil types, temperatures, elevations, and topographies. In general, despite a tough spring, most of the crop is doing well and holds lots of yield potential. The role now is to manage the crop to capture that yield potential.

While much of the crop went in likely a little too early soil moisture wise the continued damp weather prevented a lot of crusting and compaction from causing more significant problems with crop emergence and early growth.


  • Timely spraying has been a challenge.
  • Weed control  has been good despite weather delays.
  • Big weeds were better controlled than expected because the damp weather kept them lush and growing well to take up herbicide, the same might not be the case in another year of big weeds in dryer conditions.


  • Continued wet weather has slowed finishing planting. There has been some crusting in fields resulting in needing replanting, however, some fields remained damp, preventing crusting during emergence.
  • Continued planting struggles in Dufferin, Peel, Halton, and some parts of North Wellington, but they have made good progress but more so on beans than corn.


  • Crops went in timely and are doing well, lots of growth with canopy closure.
  • With the varied planting dates and seeding conditions the crop is quite variable within and between fields.
  • Compaction due to jumping the conditions a bit early, have been hidden by the continued damp soils so if it turns dry there could be issues emerge.
  • Much of the corn is advancing rapidly with moist soils and warmer temperatures so finishing N application is important.
  • Herbicide programs held the control of big weeds
  • Watch for continued nutrient deficiencies and be prepared to address, the yellow isn’t just nitrogen. Reports of sulfur, manganese, and magnesium symptoms and if recovery not seen as those plants begin into rapid growth, a targeted application may be warranted.

Edible Beans

  • With the traditionally later planting date of these crops, planting went well into mostly good conditions and warm soil temperatures, so emergence was good and quick.


  • Trying to make good/excellent quality dry hay has likely been the most trying issue within the region.


  • Continues to look great and has weathered some intense storms across the area.
  • There has been some strong wind, heavy rain, and hail across the area, but the crop is holding tough although some lodging being observed on what is some tall wheat.


  • Variable and replants due to both crusting and slugs mostly in reduced till fields.
  • Flowering of much of early crop.
  • Conditions in the canopies likely foster white mold so should be on the lookout for this and prepared for control measures if conditions persist.

Weed Control

  • Pre residuals worked well but efficacy running out.
  • With the prevalence of herbicide resistance, the tolerance for weed escapes that go to seed is much lower than it used to be, get escapes checked for resistance so that the right management can be applied in the future.
  • There has been some crop injury but the rapid recent growth conditions have fostered recovery.

On the Lookout

  • People are reminded to look for corn rootworm issues associated with some resistant populations across the region and noting troubles will assist crop planning next year.
  • Tar spot should be watched for, if it comes early and conditions persist it can have significant impacts on corn yield.

Northern Ontario – Tuesday, June 25th

Albert Tenuta, Field Crop Plant Pathologist, OMAFRA

Cereal Disease: Stripe rust is being found in the southwest from Essex up to Ottawa region. Moved into Ontario earlier this year than in previous years. T3 fungicide applications for fusarium also work on stripe rust. Fusarium head blight is starting to show up across a broad area of the province with slightly more severity than recent years. Taking field preharvest evaluations for FHB, lodging, etc. is important to prioritize harvesting order.  

Corn Diseases: Tar spot in corn is being monitored across North America and is currently as far north as Michigan, Illinois and Iowa but seeing similar build up to what was experienced in 2021 and 2022. In the past it was found as far north as Georgian Bay, Simcoe county 2022. First found in Ontario in Ridgetown in 2020, this disease is carried in the wind and successfully overwinters here on corn residue. 2021 detections were from Windsor to Toronto. Yield losses of 30 to 60 bushels occurred in some fields. Expect to potentially see tar spot move north by the end of July to September.

Looking for samples for testing: If seeing stripe rust or leaf rust, Albert would like samples shipped to him so he can have them tested to determine the isolates and know what resistance genes are still effective against these diseases. Would appreciate getting soil samples from the north for the nematode survey in any crop to keep track of SCN and other nematodes and also do some phytophthora testing in conjunction with Dr. Owen Wally (AAFC at Harrow). For more information contact Albert at

Regional Updates

Northwest – 2024 has been a challenging year for the northwest.  A lot of corn is just barely out of the ground. Flea beetles have been very active in canola and spider mites in hops. There are still some unseeded acres and spraying has been challenging with windstorms. Very hot temps are making seedling crops struggle to come out.  

Thunder Bay – It’s been a good year for cereals and canola. Did have cutworm infestations in barley but saw good control with insecticides. Will likely break yield records in for canola this year given the successful early seeding dates. 

Manitoulin Island – Almost done seeding. 4 inches of rain in 5 days. Canola planted in warmer soil seems to be doing well. Spraying has been challenging with the wet soil. Wheat is close to heading and soybeans are in V3, Corn in V6. Concerned about potential challenge of getting in to spray T3s if the rains continue. 

Algoma – Many are finally getting to spraying and reseeding where needed. Going to check how the spraying went on the cutworm injury. Canola near Verner and New Liskeard have bolted with flower buds. Nothing flowering yet. 

Temiskaming – Earliest canola is starting to bolt. Cereals are approaching flag leaf. Winter wheat is starting to turn. It has been dry, but some moisture is finally coming to help the crops. July 18th evening tour at research tour and open house at the research station. 


Excellence in Agriculture Awards are open to recognize achievements in agriculture and the agrifood sector. There are twelve categories ranging from Youth, Food Processing, Northern business Farm Family, Indigenous, Metis or Inuit owned business to Education and Urban Agriculture. Nominations are being accepted until July 22, 2024. More information can be found at: 

Ontario Crops Research Centre (OCRC) – New Liskeard Plot Tour, July 18th 1:30pm to 4pm, 883280 Highway 65E, Temiskaming Crop Coalition Tour, July 18th BBQ at 5pm at Koch’s Farm 125364 Gravel St, Busses leave at 6:30pm for 3 stops.

Northwestern International Ag Expo July 25 to 27 in Emo: For more details and to purchase tickets go to: