Ontario Crop Report – Week of June 13, 2024

Areas across the province are seeing variability in corn emergence and growth due to frequent rainfalls.

The 2024 planting season will become the new bookmark for comparing challenging spring conditions for planting. Heavy-textured soils combined with frequent rainfall have resulted in significant acres intended for corn (up to 15%) being transitioned to soybeans. In fields where herbicides and nitrogen have already been applied, options are more limited. Corn silage, cover crops (such as crimson clover or buckwheat) or annual forage crops such as Sorghum Sudan Grass could be an option for unseeded acres. Unseeded acres should not be left fallow.  Planting cover crops in those fields can provide weed control and soil health benefits and can help prepare a field for timely wheat planting this fall. 


There are no issues reported with early planted corn with most advanced stands at V8.  Some corn fields planted just before the heavy rains (around May 25th) are suffering slow uneven emergence, less vigour and tile-run colour variations.  The crop has stalled the last week with the wet and cool conditions, but the forecasted warm weather will quickly push corn ahead.  Based on pre-side dress N test results that indicate average to slightly lower soil N, largely due to prolonged wet soils, general optimal N rates will range from normal to slightly higher. Side-dress nitrogen applications are underway.

Figure 1: Areas across the province are seeing variability in corn emergence and growth due to frequent rainfalls.

Figure 1: Areas across the province are seeing variability in corn emergence and growth due to frequent rainfalls. 


The earliest planted beans are at V2-V3 stage and look great, with even emergence and uniform stand.  Some fields planted just before May 25th weekend rains are suffering slow, uneven emergence and lack of vigour due to cool temperatures and some crusting.  Continued wet weather has mostly helped prevent hard crust on surface, allowing some to continue to emerge.  Populations in general are sufficient except for some fields that were planted at reduced seeding rates. Some emergence in these fields has been impacted by the reduced rates.  

Unseeded acres are present in all geographies, dependent on soil texture and drainage.  In areas with heavy clays, there are farms with no crops planted yet this spring.  Slug feeding is common, especially in no-till fields, but forecasted warmer temperatures should help move them further into the soil.  

Growers are encouraged to monitor fields for emergence issues and make replant decisions based on the population, insect damage and time. 


Wheat continues to look great.  Fields are starting to turn colour as they reach maturity in the southwest while eastern regions of the province are completing flowering, and most acres have received the T3 fungicide applications in a timely manner. Weather conditions to date have been ideal for grain fill.  Wheat heads are large with seed counts indicating 40-50 seeds per head in some fields compared to normal 32 to 35 seeds/head.   


Spring canola is near bolting in some regions. A few different species of cutworm have been damaging crops in parts of Northern Ontario, including causing defoliation in canola prior to bolting. There are no clear defoliation thresholds for canola at this stage, as most studies have been on flea beetle damage in seedling stages. Generally, crops can tolerate some defoliation and concern increases above 30% defoliation. Accurate identification of the cutworm will guide management decisions, as some have multiple generations and will feed on stems and pods while and others will stop feeding by the end of June. Flea beetle pressure has been high on some select fields but have not been a widespread problem in Northern Ontario.  

Winter canola harvest may begin before the end of June in southern regions. Grain must be delivered at 10% moisture or below. On a hot day moisture will drop by 2 or 3 percent through the day so harvest can often begin before grain is at 10% moisture. Green weeds in the field can increase harvest losses. Common pre-harvest herbicide options include Reglone and glyphosate tank-mixed with Eragon. Ensure the appropriate surfactant is included. Reglone uptake by plants is best when sprayed in the evening or on a cloudy day. Eragon works best when sprayed on a warm, sunny day.  

Dry Beans 

More than half of the dry bean crop has been planted and planting will be complete within the next week if it does not rain. The ideal temperature for emergence is above 15° C, and recent cool weather may have resulted in poor emergence and weakened plants.  


Dairy first cut is wrapping up, and first cut on other farms is starting.  Yields have been excellent, and regrowth is coming back quickly.  Quality will depend on stage of crop at harvest, but with frequent rains, some fields were harvested more mature than intended. Some fields endured significant compaction and rutting during harvest.  

Some stands of new seeding continue to experience potato leafhopper pressure, with some fields above threshold populations. If stands are not nearing cutting, an insecticide application may be warranted. Spring cereal forage harvest will begin shortly as much of it is at or near flag leaf.  

Insects and Diseases 

Cutworms are a problem in many fields, especially in Northern Ontario, where cut plants and plant feeding are showing up in patches or larger portions of fields.  Of the 30 species, there are several that cause damage.  Dingy cutworm overwinter as larvae and climb plants to foliar feed but rarely cut the plants; these should be completing their feeding in the next week or so. Variegated cutworm are also climbing cutworms that cause foliar feeding damage. These have a second generation that can result in foliage, bud and flower damage in canola in late July or August.  Black cutworm, dark sided and redback cutworm species tend to clip plants at the soil surface.  Cutworms are nocturnal, so scouting and spraying are most effective in late afternoon or early evening.  Some natural predators such as ground beetles, Copidosoma parasitoids and fungal pathogens are helping to control cutworm populations. Information on cutworms, damage and thresholds can be found on Field Crop News: Cutworms of All Kinds 

Figure 2: Cutworm injury in barley fields in Northern Ontario.

Armyworm is present in some fields in Southern Ontario although as crops mature, generally they become less of a risk.  Scouting for true armyworm should continue in winter cereals for the next few weeks and spring cereals for the next month.  Cereal leaf beetle numbers are declining in the southwest, as they move farther north. 

Tar spot has been detected in Indiana 3 weeks earlier than normal.  Scouting for tar spot is important but a need for fungicide application ahead of tasselling is not anticipated for Ontario corn at this point. 


Limited opportunities for herbicide application due to wind and rain have left a high density of weeds in some fields.  Fields with burndowns applied a month ago may need another application.  Dicamba injury has been noted on some varieties with lower tolerance, combined with stresses including shallow seeding, heavy rain after application and cool conditions.  Herbicide uptake is higher than usual with cool nights, slower growth and rain events keeping herbicides in solution, resulting in better weed control, but also higher risk of crop injury. 


Upcoming deadlines:  

For Production Insurance coverage, crop planting deadlines are June 15th for corn, and June 30th for soybeans. Agricorp asks customers to contact us by June 15 if they think they will have unseeded acreage. 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).

Soil Survey Maps

Ontario Ministry Agriculture, Food and Agri-Business (OMAFA) in collaboration with OSCIA (Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association) and other partners is working to update the Ontario Soil Survey Maps across the province and are looking for farm volunteers with interest in participating. Targeted regions are East Central, Eastern Valley, Georgian Central, Golden Horseshoe, Quinte and St Clair regions. If interested, please find more information here: Participate in the Ontario Soil Survey | OSCIA (ontariosoilcrop.org)  

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 for Thursday June 6th to Wednesday June 12, 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)26.313.520.0222.7935571826
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.811.613.4191.7866506759
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.110.823.1212.1848493747
10 YR Norm (11-20)25.610.523.1220.3849492740
10 YR Norm (11-20)24.29.927.5177.1744397622
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)23.69.622.6193.5727391635
10 YR Norm (11-20)23.68.626.9201.2708375619
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)24.39.624.4205.7791448697
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)23.76.822.6169.5554293524
10 YR Norm (11-20)21.45.427.0190.0535252450
10 YR Norm (11-20)
10 YR Norm (11-20)23.96.429.9163.5587296536
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.  

Breakfast Meeting Minutes 

Ridgetown – Tuesday, June 11 


  • Unplanted acres higher than anticipated, most farmers are finished corn, with some areas down 10-15% of intended acreage 
  • Heavy clays are unplanted, some pockets of loamier/lighter soils as well. Unplanted acres in belt extending through Alvinston-Glencoe-Dutton-St Thomas-Belmont 
  • Still some corn expected to go in, on fields already fertilized or sprayed with residual herbicides, or for silage for dairy operations 
  • Early planted crops look tremendous. 
  • Later crop planted just before heavy, cool rains on May 25th weekend have had uneven emergence, poorer stands, less vigour comparatively. Some fields showing tile run corn, yellowing 
  • Tar spot has been detected in Indiana 3 weeks earlier than normal 
  • Corn rootworm trap network will be running again this year, contact Tracey Baute for traps. Anticipating 2024 to be higher pressure than normal 


  • Unseeded acres present in all geographies, dependent on soil texture and drainage. Heavy clays especially – some farmers have 0% of the crop planted so far.
  • Earliest crop is up at V2-V3 and looking great, even emergence and good stand 
  • Crop planted just before May 25th weekend rain are concerning with slow, uneven emergence and lack of vigour with cool temperatures. Continued wet weather has helped prevent hard crust on surface, allowing some to continue to emerge. 
  • Some slug and insect feeding noted, especially in no-till fields. Hoping for hot weather to drive them down further in the soil.


  • Big potential for wheat yield this year. Some fields noting 4-5 seeds per spikelet established. Seed counts showing 40-45 seeds/head in some fields, compared to normal 32-35 seeds/head. Currently tracking 17.5 GDD (Growing Degree Days) per day, compared to 19 GDD per day last year, may be an extended grain fill period.
  • Above average potential for Fusarium Head Blight (FHB) and DON in crop this year, due to wet conditions around pollination. Most wheat varieties with moderate resistance to FHB carry the FHB1 gene, which may not be as strong against FHB and DON infection. 
  • Armyworm is present in some fields in Kent and Lambton, although as crop matures, generally less of a risk 
  • Cereal Leaf Beetle numbers are declining in the southwest, as they move farther north. Malathion is only product registered for control, but if spraying for armyworm, Delegate has good activity as well.


  • Yield have been okay to phenomenal thus far 
  • Some fields have yet to be harvested, may be lower quality 

Edible Beans 

  • Planting is slowly underway on lighter soils as cool temperatures stick around 
  • Slow emergence thus far 

Hort Crops 

  • Tomatoes to finish planting this week, more or less on schedule. Earliest plantings are beginning to flower, fungicide applications will begin shortly.
  • Peas – early planted crop looks excellent, later crop may be a different story as cool, wet conditions have hampered emergence 
  • Sugar beets – early planted fields canopying, looking great. Later planted fields showing water damage, stand reduction in some fields. 


  • High density of large weeds in some fields. Fields with burndowns applied a month ago may need another.  
  • Dr. Peter Sikkema notes that as weed size increases, rate of glyphosate will need to increase for the same level of control. Rate is dependent on the weed species as well. For example, a dandelion less than 4” in size will be controlled with 0.67L/ac of glyphosate, up to 6” in size will require 1L/ac of glyphosate, and over 6” in size will require 1.33L/ac of glyphosate. 
  • Dicamba injury has been noted – some differences in tolerance amongst hybrids. Due to stress in growing season thus far, including shallow seeding, heavy rain after application, and cool conditions. 
  • Herbicide uptake is likely higher than usual due to cool nights, slower growth, and rain events keeping herbicide in solution. Leading to higher chance of crop injury, but better weed control as well. 

Cobourg – Tuesday, June 11 

Field conditions this spring have been tough. Many soils – not just clays – seem to have consolidated, forcing shallower planting depths than ideal. Crusting has not been much of an issue in this part of the province. 

  • Winter wheat is starting to turn. Stripe rust has been found between Cobourg, Lindsay, and Stouffville. Most fields that are going to get a T3 fungicide application have been sprayed. Severe cereal leaf beetle damage was found in Prince Edward, but the pest is too mature for control measures. Although the crop looks excellent right now, there are concerns that continued cool, overcast conditions may negatively impact grain fill. 
  • Dairy first cut is wrapping up, and first cut on other farms is starting. Yields have been excellent, and regrowth is coming back quickly so far. Reports on quality are not yet available. Spring cereal forage harvest will begin shortly. 
  • Corn planting is estimated at over 95% completed. Most corn is between 3- and 6-leaf stage. Despite being ahead of normal on CHU (Crop Heat Units) accumulation, the cool, overcast conditions have caused much of the corn to look pale. Some side-dress N applications have started. 
  • Some issues have been reported with soybean emergence. Fields that were planted 2 in. deep to find moisture and fields with lower plant populations now have thinner stands than ideal. It has been challenging to find good weather windows to spray. Slugs continue to be a concern this year. 

Mt Forest – Wednesday, June 12 


  • flowering was roughly 1 week ahead of normal for wheat this year in midwestern Ontario 
  • T3 fungicides are essentially wrapped up, with exception of later fields in later areas (e.g. Orangeville) 
  • stripe rust is very evident on highly susceptible varieties in fields where no fungicides have been applied 
  • later tiller heads are evident in some thinner, later planted fields, may create some management challenges 
  • grain fill starting under cooler conditions is a good foundation for yields, potential looks good 


  • planting is essentially complete except for small amount of silage corn 
  • some corn was switched to soybeans, particularly on heavier/poorly drained soils 
  • in general, crop looks very good 
  • minimal replants, ground conditions were tough at planting in some fields, seems like consistent rainfall throughout the spring may have assisted emergence and development in fields that went in too wet (leafing out underground, crooked stems etc.) 
  • staging is highly variable across fields, ranging from spiking (late planted areas or after forage harvests) to as much as 10 leaf tips, V3 to V5 might capture a lot of the crop… variability may make dealing with pest like Western Bean Cutworm more challenging 
  • some stand issues/variabilities are showing up now with nodal root growth (compaction at planting etc.) if it continues to stay wet, may not be issues, variability could become more apparent if weather changes to hot and dry 
  • challenging conditions for corn or soybeans planted after forage harvest (e.g. rye or triticale silage), ground was often wet to time forage harvest timing correctly, slots and sidewall compaction in these fields 
  • growth has slowed over the past week with cool weather, but forecast for the next week is very warm 


  • planting is essentially complete on drier soils, but still continues in areas with heavier/poorly drained soils or those that received more frequent rainfall (Drayton, Dundalk, Peel etc.) 
  • a bit of replanting, but not abnormal 
  • some beans planted before heavy rains ~10 days ago struggling with crusting 
  • weed control has been a challenge in some fields where pre-emergent herbicide could not be applied before soybeans emerged, especially when temperatures were very warm a couple of weeks ago 
  • not much talk or excitement around double crop soybeans in this part of Ontario 

Edible Beans 

  • some edible bean planting has started, some were waiting for heavier rains that had been forecast last week to pass before planting 
  • very little emergence at this point in the local area 


  • very tough spring to make dry hay so far 


  • seems to be more pests this spring – wireworm, seed corn maggot 
  • more questions than normal from growers 


  • pre herbicides worked well this year, some are starting to break now but that is not unusual, they should get crop through most of early critical weed control window 
  • some fields where weed control has been challenging 
  • weed pressure seems to be lower this year in some areas, both annuals and perennials 
  • many reports of large fleabane, generally where control has been delayed in late fields while weed growth was likely ahead of normal, really best to try to control it early 
  • if trying to control large fleabane, lower your expectations, increase water volume, spray during middle of the day where possible (but watch drift), use higher labelled rates