The 2020 growing season in Ontario has kicked off leaps and bounds ahead of 2019, though it’s not been without challenges. To catch us up on crop conditions, pest pressure, and what’s next, this RealAg LIVE! Q&A features Deb Campbell, founder of Agronomy Advantage.
In the video below, you’ll hear discussion on a huge number of topics (summary is below video):
- Hear how planting went, and how the corn crop is shaping up, if there are crusting or population issues yet.
- Wireworm populations are showing up on loams, all soil types, and in multiple crops. There isn’t a huge amount of thinning, but enough that it’s on the radar, she says.
- There’s some yield in this year’s wheat crop! It’ll be Top 10, maybe even Top 5 for some producers. The crop is uniform, was planted early, and into nearly optimum conditions, all of that contributes to productivity and yield. She likes what she sees.
- How do we figure out the optimum N rate on wheat for yield? Well, the rest of the package has to be there, too, remember. Still learning. Always learning!
- Cereal leaf beetle is following a different pattern than has been typical in past years. Oats have higher levels than winter wheat, interestingly enough.
- Flea beetles have shown up in Ontario, too, even though canola acres are low. Other Brassicas are at risk, too. But some farmers have had to replant because of stand loss. There is a red-headed flea beetle that feeds on soybeans in mid-season or pod-filling stage.
- Aphids are showing up in cereals, and there are some hot spots right now. Usually if they are in the winter wheat crop they will hit spring cereals hard. Acres of spring cereals are definitely up this year, as are prices, so keep a close eye on spring cereals.
- Cereal aphids aren’t indicative of soybean aphid threats, but it DOES help build up beneficial insect populations (so that’s good news)
- Weed control in IP beans: Perennial sow thistle is showing up in big numbers and it eats a lot of nutrients and water and it’s very aggressive and competitive. Farmers have options in Xtend beans and RoundUp Ready corn, but in IP beans there just aren’t good options for these perennial weeds. Don’t scrimp on water volume or rates and aim for suppression, not control, which can help get the crop ahead. Go back to the drawing board and look at a multi-year control and management.
- Dicamba drift management — farmers seem to have it figured out in soybean, but the last two years there have been issues with drift in corn crops. Why? Timing is different, as far as application, and more weather factors vs. a pre-seed burn-off. Messaging on beans has been heard, but it’s a new product for many advisors, reps, and farmers, alike.
- Time to move to higher water volumes, as we move to fungicide applications, for sure, but weed control needs water volume too! Do it right the first time and save yourself the re-spray.
- Especially now, make sure you’re doing a full sprayer clean out, especially moving between three (or more) crops.