Wheat Pete's Word, Oct 31: What do you do with a problem like this corn crop?


Happy Halloween, everyone. Did you corn crop dress up as a high yielding, but also high mycotoxin-infused monster? Do you dress up as a Wheat Pete’s Word listener a little tired of hearing about what to do with this corn crop?

Well, we only partially apologize, as there are still so many questions about how we got in to this mess and what to do about it, so host Peter Johnson has got the latest and not-so-greatest on harvest management, storage, and thoughts on planning for next year.

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


  • Farmers have made decent progress on the bean crop — probably 15% left to go
  • Some good news: 2,740 pounds per acre in adzuki beans
  • Send those good reports and plot results to [email protected]
  • Now, the corn story.  It’s just so bad where it’s bad — are you frustrated with mixed messages? It’s more that Wheat Pete wants farmers to know they did the right things in May and July, and that we’re still trying to figure out what we could have done differently with Mother Nature’s curve ball
  • To the question of do you harvest this corn? If you’re NOT in an area with high DON/vomitoxin levels, count yourself lucky and you don’t need to stress over getting the crop in so quickly
  • Do you harvest? As of right now Agricorp has not released any acres to be destroyed. So, if you can deliver the crop, give ‘er. But you need a home for it. Remember, a mixed TMR for lactating cows =  no more than 1 ppm; beef cows can tolerate 5 ppm. You need a home for that higher ppm corn
  • If you have storage, and insurance? You need to get a claim started asap, but yes, get it harvested. You may be out the harvest cost, but it’s going to cost to destroy it too
  • Leaving corn out, it just gets worse. No insurance? Get it binned.
  • Fines are terrible. Get it cleaned. Cleaning starts at the combine, take the time to get your settings right
  • So, if you do have to destroy the corn what’s the best way? We got some feedback. In 1992, one farmer just dropped cobs —but in 1992 the corn wasn’t mature. This year, it is. You have to think about volunteers for next year. Could try Enlist corn in 2019, but we’re talking 4,000 viable seeds per metre. Is that really going to be enough?
  • Remember that mycotoxins are immunosuppressants, so watch for diseases in livestock even if fed in low amounts
  • D3G in the DON complex, when we test the feed for DON, D3G isn’t picked up, but when fed to pigs it acts just like DON — just be mindful of that even if feeding low DON corn
  • Should you just feed wheat and barley? Well, there’s trying to find it and there’s cost to consider.
  • On to wheat — late September wheat, cold and wet right after planting, means it looks poorly. It can be ok if November is decent. But it’s not looking great….
  • Can you sneak a few more acres in, on the 45th of October? Pete has planted in late November, with a great forecast, and it worked out. You can get away with it, but you need that nice weather following planting.  At Windsor, new research suggests October 18th is the optimum planting date! That’s pretty cool
  • Warm sunny day in late November, you can spray and get good control of perennial sow thistle
  • Cereal rye spread into a corn crop gives decent control of Canada fleabane! Needs more research

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