Canola rotation, equipment sanitizing, and bees — a LIVE! with Gregory Sekulic


In guest host Kara Oosterhuis’ hot seat today is Canola Council of Canada agronomy specialist Gregory Sekulic!

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  • The four Rs when it comes to fertilizer: right place, right rate, right time, right source (who else always forgets the fourth?)
  • Grain bags. Does electrical tape work?

    Squiggly lines or stern words? Keeping the crows away. Photo credit: Gregory Sekulic
  • Bees — how did they fare last year?
  • Diseases and other things in the field?
  • Sclerotinia — 18% to 20% yield loss, right off the hop, but in areas of five years of extreme drought, it can be tough to convince farmers to spray
  • Don’t spray for last year. Make the call each year, but sclerotinia is one of those diseases that you should probably pencil in every year if canola is a common crop
  • The earliest you’ll see field evidence of sclerotinia is long past when you should have sprayed
  • When should you be scouting? Always! At or after harvest is a good time for some diseases, but some diseases look pretty similar that late. But clean stems will tell a story too.
  • Clubroot: already in much of Alberta, spreading in Saskatchewan, and it’ll be found in more Manitoba fields, too
  • We’re looking at 20 years of having clubroot around
  • There was a time where pH was going to save Western Canadian fields, but we know better now
  • A two-year break from canola can reduce spore loads
  • It’s just a matter of time before clubroot moves across the Prairies
  • Don’t bring in new equipment without cleaning and sanitizing first
  • Have suspected fields? Knock off the mud, at a minimum and seed them last
  • Pressure washing will reduce the risk even more, but is it practical? It’ll be worth it
  • A complete decontamination should happen if you are coming out of a field you have confirmed clubroot in
  • Gregory likes malt barley products (and to help lengthen that rotation)
  • He’s also a bit of a zero-till zealot. So please, deal with residue out of the combine and with the seeder; not with recreational tillage
  • There’s not necessarily anything wrong with a “canola blend” but it needs to be adapted to each field, especially to avoid over-application
  • Sulphur is perhaps the only macro that should go down in the fall (without risk/worry of losses to the environment)
  • The arena of death between beetles and pests was a huge hit at CanoLABs

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