Wheat Pete's Word, Jan 13: Respectful disagreements, sulphur availability, and sky-high crop prices


This week’s Wheat Pete’s Word kicks off with a quick explanation and an update on host Peter Johnson’s “extra 15 minutes” concept.

The agronomy questions keep rolling in, and this week, Johnson puts off some of the wheat questions and instead tackles some sulphur questions, forage questions, and questions on spring cover crops.

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].


  • Pete’s thoughts: isn’t that every week? Either way, big thanks to our sponsor for helping us keep the Word running.
  • This concept of the extra 15 minutes has caught on. What have you been doing with it?
  • One listener connected with a farmer they hadn’t spoke with in a year
  • Please, keep making those calls and reaching out.
  • Soybean prices are so high! Hey, take your profits. Even if you leave money on the table (like Pete did). It’s OK.
  • Inflation? Starting to feel like Argentina. Is new crop worth locking in? Well, remember that these prices will not last forever. And when they slide, it can be a real steep dive.
  • Hard to go broke when you’re making a profit
  • In conversations be respectful, listen, and consider the other side
  • You can disagree without being disagreeable
  • Remember the public image: don’t spread manure on frozen ground, or on snow (also, see point above)
  • Questions for last cut of alfalfa before losing the ground: potash or sulphur? Likely aren’t short K, but make sure you get that S on (and available S, not elemental)
  • Bluegrass creeping into alfalfa crop. There’s wheat in that field every four or five years. It’s in winter wheat now, and going in to alfalfa for 2022. Bluegrass makes hay! OK OK, but no, don’t broadcast this spring. After the wheat comes off, work the ground a little. Get the wheat seed to germinate, then drill the alfalfa, once volunteer wheat is controlled.
  • Is wheat the right crop? Maybe it’s corn. For a few reasons.
  • Managing for high yield, is red clover out? What level of success have you had in the past? Maybe skip it and put the oats in after as a cover.
  • Soybean ground didn’t get tilled in the fall (got the manure out instead! yay!). On that ground, there’s compaction. Spring cover crop?
  • Dr. Lee Briese spoke on soil health just last week. How much growth do you need out of a cover crop? Four to six inches of top growth is necessary or probably not worth it.
  • Hey, get that ground into alfalfa instead.
  • North Dakota farmer struggling with ergot, using copper? If you have copper deficiency yes, you will get more ergot (you need self pollination to really reduce ergot risk). But without a deficiency, no, it won’t help
  • Sulphur availability! How much can you expect from the sulphur source?

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