Wheat Pete’s Word, July 12: Corn fungicides, fertilizer strategies, and capitalizing on protein premiums

In this week’s episode of Wheat Pete’s Word, RealAg agronomist Peter Johnson highlights corn fungicides and western bean cutworm control.

He also talks about what a fun ride the wheat market has been on — are there any management opportunity to capitalize on those protein premiums?

Peter wraps up this episode discussing equipment and fertilizer strategies, and much more!

Check out what Wheat Pete has to say in his Word and the summary below!

Your questions and feedback are needed! Leave Peter a message at 1-888-746-3311, send him a tweet (@wheatpete), or email him at [email protected].


  • On the markets – wow! Rocketing higher. For goodness sakes! I’m no marketing guru, I’m doing this before the USDA report comes out at noon today, but when the markets rocket higher you get some opportunity to take some risks out of your operation and sell some crop at a profit. For goodness sakes – please do so!
  • In Ontario there are only two fungicides that will give you fusarium or gibberella control. Last year – the 2016 crop – tremendous issues with all the toxins in the crop. Can we do anything about that? The answer is – absolutely yes! But only two fungicides work on that – Proline and Caramba. Proline has a range on the label, so if you are a hog farmer and you really got hammered last year with fusarium and you’re worried about high toxin levels this year – you might want to run a higher rate of proline/caramba, with only one rate on the label. Understand you are never going to get 100 per cent control.
  • Watch peak moth flight, watch the stage of your corn crop, when those two things come together – thats when you go out and scout for western bean cutworm.
  • Tracey Baute did a great interview with Real Agriculture’s Bern Tobin, that you keep an eye out for on the site soon.
  • I just love where the protein premiums have gone on this wheat crop! So the big question becomes, ‘I’m sitting here, I have my spring wheat in Western Canada, in North Dakota, South Dakota in the U.S., we are looking at that crop and we are looking at massive protein premiums. I’ve already put my nitrogen on, the wheat crop is you know close to heading, or I’m just spraying my fusarium fungicide – is there anything I can do?’. The answer is absolutely there is! You can watch the video I did on it, here.
  • If your yield potential has been significantly reduced because of drought conditions because of high temperatures…. and remember, ever day over 25 celsius you reduce your yield potential by 1 bushel per acre per day. When it goes up over 30 degrees, that ramps up even higher, so if you’ve been getting 35 degree temperatures, maybe your wheat crop is pulled back enough that you don’t need any extra nitrogen to get high protein. But to get high protein where it’s been cooler in the northern regions, and you want to get that protein, add more nitrogen.
  • Broadcast versus seed placed fertilizer? One a one year basis, it takes 4x the amount of broadcast fertilizer to equal seed place fertilizer. So 100lbs of MAP with the seed, to get the same response I need is 400lbs. But, If I broadcast, and I do that over time, and I get up to medium, medium-high soil test values for phosphorus, then my seed placed will only ben 3-4 bushels per acre. So it’s still a benefit to seed place, but its not nearly the different we see at lower soil test levels once we have that soil built up.

Listen to previous episodes of the Word here.