Wheat Pete's Word: Plant'15 Begins, Celebrating Soil, Trouble in the Corn Bins and More


Did you know it’s Soil Conservation Week? Here we are just one day after Earth Day, and in that spirit Peter Johnson kicks off this week’s crop update with a challenge for farmers. When’s the last time you sat at the kitchen table and talked about your farm’s biggest asset, the soil? Johnson says if you haven’t yet, this week is the week to do it.

Peter Johnson talking glyphosate resistant fleabane, 2013.
Peter Johnson talking glyphosate resistant fleabane, 2013.

From there we move on to some disappointing news our of Lambton County and a few others — corn that went into storage in decent shape, albeit with some fines, and was managed well is still coming out of the bin showing evidence of spoilage and heating. What went wrong? Why did those hot spots happen? Johnson suspects there may have been some “moisture rebound,” where the corn tested, say, 13% but the center of the kernel was higher. Not much to be done now, but Johnson does urge all farmers with corn in the bin to get checking on it, but with one HUGE caution: you must practice bin safety. We’ve lost one farmer this year already to a bin accident — and that is one too many.

We can’t have a Wheat Pete update without talking wheat, so be sure to tune in below to hear the latest update on the late-seeded wheat crop. There are certainly some concerns creeping in on slow to emerge November wheat, and some fields planted with two-year old seed are experiencing high losses to seedling blights. Johnson reminds farmers out scouting and making nitrogen decisions that even early or optimally-planted wheat has holes in it this spring — make sure you’ve got realistic expectations of late planted wheat.

For farmers looking to catch up on nitrogen applications, Johnson answers your questions regarding whether or not the cool (and snowy!), damp forecast creates a nitrogen-loss risk window, plus offers up tips on sulphur forms, rates and management and magnesium considerations on forages, especially.

Got a question for Wheat Pete that you want answered on the weekly crop update? Leave a comment, Tweet us or email Peter at [email protected].

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