Wheat Pete's Word, Sept 21: Early DON levels, lofty bean prices, and weed control for wheat


Peter “Wheat Pete” Johnson is feeling pretty good this fall, as Ontario yield numbers on his very favourite wheat crop are rolling in, and the yields are pretty strong.

Will it be a new provincial record? That’s yet to be determined, but the numbers are promising. This week, the host of Wheat Pete’s Word tackles that, plus recaps some price reports for dry beans, and answers the top agronomic questions of the week.

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].


  • Simcoe County is in the Goldilocks zone this year! Just right
  • Some early numbers on wheat yields are rolling in, and Pete thinks we’re close to a record in Ontario
  • Previous provincial yield average record for winter wheat in Ontario is 97.6 bushels per acre. Pete’s math puts the provincial average yield at 97.62 bushels per acre
  • In any case, get your wheat yields reported if you haven’t yet
  • Wheat markets offered some opportunities this week
  • Pete’s brother Paisley wonders if Pete actually followed his own advice to just sell some wheat at good prices
  • Soft white winter wheat right now for 2022 is a $2.35 a bushel premium, shop around
  • Get wheat in the ground, get some prices locked in, make some money
  • Edible/dry bean prices have bumped up too; we’re talking 55 cents a pound for white beans 58 for black beans, maybe even 59 or 60 for blacks 76 for cranberries; there is even talk of 90 cent per pound adzuki beans
  • It’s not all good news, of course, there are reports of some very poor yields, especially on the early soybeans, but as we move into the longer day soybeans a lot more high 40s, low 50s bushel per acre
  • Once again this year, Aaron Breimer and Pete have a bet on corn yields. Aaron says that the final corn yield will be under 180 bushels per acre and Pete took the over
  • First silage corn coming off kind of a tougher field not just perfect and 20 per cent below average yields
  • So far, DON not a problem yet, but test, please
  • Energy looks higher than normal
  • What is going on with the corn crop and maturing slowly? And Paul Hermans from Pioneer says solar radiation is all over the map, and it’s just not flying along, because solar radiation has been sort of below average
  • But in the southwest, the corn is just burning up so fast. In these temperatures, it just dries really, really fast, particularly if there’s no moisture in the soil as well
  • Make sure you let Wheat Pete know about plots, trials, and results
  • One of the trials that I’d really like to see us put together this year and get lots of data on is adding a little bit of magnesium to our starter fertilizer for wheat
  • Question: you say no more 30-inch soybeans for you, shouldn’t you shouldn’t you do a three year project and actually look at that?
  • If you have winter canola, a grower in Chatham-Kent tweeting out a great picture of his winter canola coming up and saying that he’s scouting every few days for fall army worm because last year it took us out
  • Have you looked for green stems in dry beans? What’s it about? Great discussion on Twitter about what could be at play
  • It might be a mycoplasma or something like that, that we simply haven’t identified yet
  • Fall weed control was the topic of The Agronomists on Monday (see it here)
  • What about in wheat? Sow thistle needs a full rate of glyphosate, don’t cut the rate!
  • Fleabane, too? Add something in there for the fleabane
  • Get the wheat planted immediately, as soon as the combine gets out of the field, and then you can spray the glyphosate within about three days
  • What about the toxic effect of dying sow thistle? Not many ways around it
  • Too fluffy of a soil? Rolling could help (sounds weird but true)
  • Planting winter wheat into either barley or oat stubble. What about volunteer barley? What about volunteer oat? As long as the oats or the barley crop gets winter killed, it’s not a huge issue. If some oat survives, you can take it out with with a product like Simplicity
  • It’s so dry in southwestern Ontario, do you wait or put it in the ground and wait? As soon as it rains it will grow. Keep the depth even (in to moisture if you can, if not, go shallower)
  • In PEI, doing 1.5 million seeds per acre doesn’t 1000-kernel weight matter? Well, yes, that’s why you aim for seeds per acre and put on the pounds needed
  • MAP vs MESZ as the starter fertilizer: no difference in yield between the two
  • What about blending MAP and seed? Don’t leave it together too long, particularly if there’s dusty MAP

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