Wheat Pete’s Word, Sep 16 — Stay on Top of Silage Moisture and, For Goodness Sakes, Get Rid of Your Corn

It’s warm and dry, silage moisture is dropping too fast, bean farmers are losing yields, hay producers are losing fertility, and you’ve got to get wheat planting right! All that in this week’s episode of Wheat Pete’s Word.

The Highlights:

Corn Prices

USDA photo by Bob Nichols, CC 2.0.

USDA photo by Bob Nichols, CC 2.0.

A shortage of corn has prices skyrocketing, but the demand will disappear soon, cautions Peter Johnson, resident agronomist for RealAgriculture, and, obviously, host of this show.

“If you can deliver corn — if you have old crop in the bin, for goodness sakes, get rid of it…. If you can deliver by the 15th or 20th of October, then there are still some very, very high bids for that early harvested corn.”

RelatedUSDA Predicts Big Yields, French Wheat Demand Grows and Quality Continues to Impress — This Week in the Grain Markets

Silage Moisture

Corn HarvestWith a late-season heat wave, most silage producers are having issues with moisture dropping too fast. But, one producer got in touch with Wheat Pete to ask about maximum moisture levels.

Is 68% moisture too wet to fill a silo? 

“Moistures are dropping in that silage crop as much as a half, or even up to one percent per day. So, you really have to stay on top of that,” says Johnson. But, “in a big tower silo, 60% moisture is really all you want.”

No silo? No worries. Expect to hear about other ideal moisture levels in the podcast.

RelatedGaining Ground: The Secret to Top Quality Haylage and Silage

Seeding after Silage

john deere seedingIt’s still early and warm in areas where corn silage is harvested, says Johnson.

“What an incredible opportunity to plant oats as a cover crop after that silage… For goodness sakes, take advantage of that sunshine.”

RelatedFinding a Home for Biodiversity in Intensive Cropping Systems —  Blake Vince

Bean & Soybean Harvest

USDA photo by Bob Nichols, CC 2.0.

USDA photo by Bob Nichols, CC 2.0.

The dry, hot weather is meaning fast dry down and checked seed coats. Do a water test to look for cracks in your seeds, says Johnson. Soybeans being harvested at 10% moisture will see a 3% loss in yield, plus shatter loss.

RelatedSoybean School: An Inside Look at Grading Soybeans

No matter what kind of combine you’re running, set it up properly, with tips from Peter Johnson.

And More

Soil probeBesides the topics listed above, Johnson also talks about:

  • seeding wheat after corn silage,
  • doing a soil test for sulphur and potash availability in hay land,
  • seeding winter wheat and
  • calling in with feedback.

RelatedWheat School: Seedbed Prep Begins at the Combine

Have a question for Wheat Pete? Call 1-888-746-3311 or send him a tweet @wheatpete.

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