Wheat School: Frost Damaged Heads — What's the Yield Loss?

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As we found out in the last episode of Wheat Pete’s Word, frost hit many fields in eastern Canada in the last couple of weeks, even affecting some wheat crops. In this Wheat School, Peter Johnson walks a wheat field and shows you the different ways frost can impact the wheat crop so late in the spring.

When walking through crops to assess damage, look for curled flag leaves, bent heads that have pushed through the side of the boot, purpling, and aborted kernels. Where low levels of aborted seed occur, viable kernels will likely compensate for some of the loss, according to Johnson, our resident wheat specialist.

Most fields experienced only low levels of damage, but depending on the crop stage and severity, there are some fields that may experience high losses. If that’s the case, which is rare but possible, this crop may just be straw and it’s time to get it into soybeans asap.

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