Wheat Pete’s Word, Oct 13: Empty stalks, armyworm alert, gibberella, and drying costs

Goooood day. In this episode of the Wheat Pete’s Word, your host Peter “Wheat Pete” Johnson gives updates on all things ag related in Ontario, and beyond.

Also in this week’s episode, Johnson has advice for scouting for fall armyworm in winter canola, when to harvest beans, corn stability, and much more. Listen on!

Have a question you’d like Johnson to address or some yield results to send in? Disagree with something he’s said? Leave him a message at 1-888-746-3311, send him a tweet (@wheatpete), or email him at [email protected].


  • Alert! Fall armyworm in winter canola
  • Absolutely decimating some crops near Blenheim, in Essex and Chatham-Kent (see below)
  • Wait. Where was all the green material in late August?
  • Shane Thomas shares a chart on how much companies spend on R&D
  • For some, it’s as high as 10 per cent of total sales! It’s something. That money does push things forward
  • Beans at 18 per cent, do I harvest? HARVEST. Pay now for drying, or pay more in losses later is Wheat Pete’s new mantra
  • Window of opportunity in some areas for beans. Not all bad! Lows of 26 bu/ac, up to over 80 bu/ac
  • Corn stability continues to be an issue, but the corn just isn’t quite ready yet
  • Corn stalks seem empty…it wouldn’t take much to knock them over
  • Get that corn out of the field as soon as you can
  • In one field, every 5th or 6th ear showing gibberella on the tip. High moisture, warm weather will encourage spread
  • Clean those grates on the tile outlets, it’s so important to keep the water moving
  • What’s causing wheat roots into the tile? Is better wheat the culprit? When it’s dry at grain fill, that’s when you’ll see roots in tile
  • Is it too late to plant wheat? Heck no! Video here.
  • Corn is black layered everywhere but is taking it’s sweet time drying down
  • 32 per cent moisture seems to be a threshold that takes some time to get past (relative humidity plays a role)
  • Bincast requires a sign-in, but it’s there
  • No-till is making some farmers really happy in Ontario
  • Vertical tillage ahead of a big rain can be all bad for saturation at the top (you break the big channels for infiltration)
  • Clover has been flowering for two weeks, do I really need to keep it much longer? Yes, if you want the max N credit
  • Can you manage an oat crop with tillage for N to corn? Nope, it’s a timing thing
  • Dry manure on corn in the spring causes compaction! Put it on in the fall before corn, not spring, please
  • Wheat besides a cover crop is riddled with slugs in the first 20 feet. Will the wheat regrow?
  • Planted/seeded wheat is not the same as broadcast wheat seed

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