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The Cropwalker - Volume 5 Issue 27

The Cropwalker - Volume 5 Issue 27

By Jonathan Zettler CPA, CMA, CCA-ON and Patrick Lynch CCA-ON


Second complimentary issue for 2022
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Thank you for reading;

Patrick and Jonathan
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Crop Conditions
Weather Welcome rains over the weekend and on Monday brought smiles to many. At least 1 M acres of corn receiving this rain have 10 bu/ac added to their final yield. Probably 2.0 M acres of soybeans have yield increased by 3-4 bu/ac. Other areas also have a yield increase, but not every farm received rain. Total 10 M bu corn and 6 M bu of soybeans makes this a $200 M + rain. –Winter wheat Harvest is continuing without major issues. Generally, through Lambton, Middlesex, Oxford and into Niagara peninsula first yields are surprisingly better than anticipated. Everyone feels that later harvested which will be the later planted will be lower yielding. Harvest is just starting with first growers in Huron county reporting average yield this year at 5-year average or slightly above. One grower commented “no lines at the elevator” Straw yields are decent at 2,500-3,000 lbs per acre baled. Corn Starting to see the first tassels this week which is about average but maybe a bit later than last year. Lots of time to monitor and spray for Tar Spot and other leaf diseases. Soybeans continue without major issues. Weather is conducive for spider mite and aphids but no reports of spraying.   Forages new seedings ready to cut or already started. Watch regrowth for leaf hopper buildup.

Things to Do This Week
1.     Check fire extinguishers to make sure they are charged. Good idea to buy a couple more to leave in tractors or trucks that will be in fields.
2.       Instruct people how to use a fire extinguisher. Aim at the base of the fire, not at the flames.
3.     Check for evenness of corn tasseling during tassel emergence. This is the one time of year after crop emergence, you have for the best indication of uniformity of crop emergence. If tassel emergence is not uniform, emergence was not uniform.
4.     Check the perimeter of fields along bush lots and waterways for invasive weed species. These are typical spread by birds migrating north.
5.     Talk to your retail supplier about fungicide application on corn
6.     Check wheat stubble for weeds that should be controlled before you plant your cover crop.
Operating a Fire Extinguisher
PASS describes 4 basic steps
Pull the pin
Aim at the base of the flames
Squeeze the handle to discharge extinguishing agent
Sweep the nozzle from side to side as you approach the fire directing the extinguishing agent at the base of the flames.
Tar spot I am encouraging growers to spray as many acres of corn as possible for leaf diseases. This crop is too valuable to lose to diseases. I have reached out to the main crop protection manufacturing companies for thoughts on tar spot.

(Lauren Benoit Bayer) Tar spot is a fungal disease in corn easily recognized by black tar-like specks that can appear on both sides of the leaf. It cannot be scraped off. It will develop fastest on areas of the leaf that retain the most moisture. It develops more quickly in cool humid conditions with extended periods of leaf wetness. Spores overwinter in the soil. It is spread by wind. Estimated corn yield loss in Ontario in 2021 was 3.9 M bushels. Bayer plots with Delaro Complete + Proline added 28 bu/ac over the check.

I spoke with one of the aerial applicator companies and they said they have a lot of acres already booked with retail dealers for applications. They were hesitant to suggest they can take on a lot more acres. I suggest if you want your corn sprayed for Tar Spot that you talk to your dealer now.
Q I asked the fungicide manufacturers “what about aerial applications?”

Ans Rob Miller BASF
Hi Pat; We have seen no significant difference between ground and aerial application for leaf diseases or Gibb. With aerial application it is important to be well organized with field maps and proper communication. We have had several meetings with the various aerial applicator companies during the winter and this was one area that they wanted to set the expectations. It is always easier to remove fields vs add them at the last minute, or the night before based on weather patterns. Having the product, water, and detailed field maps will also improve efficiency.

Ans David Robertson Bayer
Hello, Bayer does support the use of aerial application for Delaro Complete and Proline.  Ideally, we would like to see 5 gal/acre for water volume.  I know that some aerial applicators will use less water and still see good results.

Ans Marijke Vanderlaan (Syngenta)
We are registered for aerial applications. We encourage growers to work with their custom applicators and read and follow the labels.

Ans Grace Jones Corteva
As Corteva, we generally see no issues utilizing aerial application for tar spot. Coverage is key, the higher the water volume the better. When battling WBC, we have had good success with Delegate aerially, so think coverage requirements would be comparable for tar spot, so aerial can definitely do the job.
Acapela, registered for aerial and no permits required, is a tool you could utilize. Registration for tar spot pending on Acapela label but is expected soon.
I do think ensuring we are prioritizing high risk fields and utilizing a second application in high pressure areas is key.

Corn Fungicides
Here is a summary of what is labelled for Ontario. Don’t look at just yield when it comes to selecting a fungicide. If you are in an area where marketability of the crop can be a concern. Also consider quality, this means selecting a product with DON suppression. A 10-bushel yield bump might not mean much if you are dinged $50/MT for high DON. Lodging can be an issue some years. Typically, fungicide sprayed corn stands better.
Weed Control
After wheat harvest weed control
Check wheat stubble and decide on a strategy. If you have perennials like perennial sow thistle, consider not spraying until you have good regrowth in early September. If you have red clover underseeded consider clipping as short as possible if the stubble is 5-6” or higher. Clipping will set back weeds and get the red clover growing evenly. If you don’t see much red clover don’t give up on it yet. It is amazing how many fields of wheat had red clover underseeded and nothing much started to grow until a couple of weeks after harvest and a good rain. You can patch up a spotty stand of red clover in a couple of weeks with another cover crop.
Q What type of yield can I expect with oats planted after winter wheat and taken as oatlage? How much P and K are removed?
Ans. I expect about 2,000 pounds of dry matter. The amount of nutrients removed is about 30 lbs./ac P2O5 and about 100 lbs./ac K2O.
If you harvest oats, you get the benefit of having the cover crop and adding organic matter to the soil in terms of the above ground part you cannot harvest and the roots.
Soybean Fungicides – what to do now
If you didn’t spray earlier for white mould, it is probably too late to spray for mould control now. Now you are looking at leaf diseases, this may mean using a different fungicide product or rate that what you have chosen if you were targeting white mould. Product list with labelled diseases listed below.
Soybeans – to spray or not to spray?
Q Should I spray my soybeans with a fungicide?
We have been requested to take a topic and debate pros and cons of the subject.
Truth is either of us could take either side of some debates

I don’t think you should be spraying soybeans for disease control
1.     You have limited resources and time. The priority is corn, and you may have to apply a fungicide twice if Tar spot takes off

2.     Hot dry weather which we have had does not favour buildup of diseases

3.     If you want to spray for white mould most fields have already passed the timing to spray for mould control.

4.     If you are in a mould prone situation and already applied your first application a second application is warranted.

I have the right to change my mind as the season progresses.

Ans JZ
Why you should spray.

1.It’s hard to predict the weather, but you can predict which soybean fields are high risk for white mould. I typically put together a plan in the winter/early spring based on variety and past cropping practices. These fields are usually timed for a single application at the pin bean stage (R2.5). In years where we have very damp weather, this may become a two-pass approach.

2.White mould and Phomopsis are two diseases that are the biggest yield robbers when it comes to high management soybeans. If you want to play in the 60 bu/ac + soybean game, and have done everything else right, this is the capstone to finishing that off.

3.There are areas of the province (Grey/Wellington/Dufferin, Eastern Ontario) that consistently get white mould, and it should be a standard part of the soybean program (regardless of yield potential) to manage for this disease, due to the heavy fog conditions post flower.
Correction from Last week’s Cropwalker
1.     I wrote last week that seeding rate for triticale is 145 lbs./ac as suggested by seed companies. In reality the US research locations that work with triticale are suggesting 90-100 lbs./ac.
2.     One reader suggested adjusting the cereal rye seeding rates based upon planting date. He does 80 lbs./ac before September 25th, and 100 lbs./ac after that, with an eye to harvesting it as forage in the spring.
A review for summer seeding alfalfa
The two most important things. Control volunteer wheat and watch seeding depth.
If you do these two things correctly you have conquered summer alfalfa seeding. Other points.
1.     Seed should be in the ground by August 10-15th. Earlier seeding will work if you have good soil moisture.
2.     Spray with glyphosate to control volunteer wheat and weeds such as chickweed before you work the ground.
3.    Apply manure or fertilizer P and K. I like to have the P worked in. If field is testing low in P consider putting on more than will be removed in one year. P does not move through the soil as well as K does. A good crop of alfalfa grass will remove 65-70 lbs./ac of P2O5 yearly. If your soil test is low, consider a minimum of 100 lbs./ac P2O5 (200 lbs./ac of MAP).
4.     Adding a companion crop such as oats or peas and or oats greatly reduces the chances of a good catch of alfalfa.
5.     You must have a fine seedbed. If you applied manure and worked it in, you must get rid of the lumps
6.     Spray volunteer wheat if it emerges after alfalfa emerges. This will mean you may need to reseed grasses.
7.     Consider using Harvxtra (glyphosate resistant variety) where you have hard to kill weeds such as heavy chickweed pressure. Harvxtra has the added benefit of higher feed quality as the crop advances in maturity. If you want grass in the mix, seed grasses right after you spray glyphosate. We like to have alfalfa seeded by mid- August, but grasses will generally establish if seeded by mid-September. Grasses do not require as early of establishment to successfully overwinter.
Western Bean Cutworm (WBC) moth counts are still low in Ontario. It is still early. However, count numbers are also still low in Michigan.
Potato leaf hoppers in alfalfa are yield reducers.
Alfalfa cut in early July is the crop most at risk. Check fields and if you see significant numbers. Potato leaf hoppers are wedge shaped, light green in colour. The larva (nymphs) feed on the underside of leaves. They can be identified by their movement. They can move forward, backwards, and sideways with equal speed. They are blown in each year from the US Gulf area. They start to build up around July 1. Leafhoppers go through 2-4 life cycles a season in Ontario. Heat encourages shorter life cycles and higher leafhopper levels. Females lay 2-3 eggs daily in the stems of alfalfa plants and in the main veins and petioles of bean leaves. Eggs hatch about 9 days later. Just cut Alfalfa in early July is the crop most at risk. Check fields and if you see significant numbers, spray Go to https://cropprotectionhub.omafra.gov.on.ca/ The Ontario Crop Protection Hub for registered actives and products. Females live for about 1 month. Spraying dimethoate gives some initial knock down. I figure about 30% of dimethoate activity is by knock down. The other 70% is by residual. The plant takes up dimethoate. Dimethoate does not kill the eggs. Any eggs that hatch or leafhoppers that fly in will be controlled by residual dimethoate. The residual should last for about 10 days. Matador is not systemic. Matador residual is shorter than dimethoate and Matador breaks down quicker when it is hot (over 25 C)
Not to spray for leaf hoppers in new seedings must be a conscious decision. They can also be very damaging to edible beans especially under hot dry conditions.
Q Thoughts on spreading manure after wheat harvest.
Ans There are a number of issues. First is to make sure nutrients do not enter tiles through the deep cracks that appeared before the rain. Using some tillage before manure application will reduce the probability of manure getting into tiles. For sure you must incorporate manure after application. This prevents loss of nitrogen to the air and lessens the chance of manure running across the soil and entering water ways.

I like to apply manure after winter wheat work it in and plant a cover crop.

In terms of moisture 5,000 gallons of manure is equal to about ¼” of rain.

"Don't say its wheat until you harvest it"

Arabic Proverb