Wheat Pete's Word, Nov 1: Managing fines, flat soys, snapping stalks, and the importance of calibrating


No one likes snow in October, but it’s especially unwelcome when there is still crop in the field.

For Manitobans, it looks more like December than November 1 out there, but at least harvest is done. For Ontario, however, so many thousands of acres of corn are now very wet and covered in snow, and some soys have been knocked flat in a streamer system that moved through the last few days.

From lodging, to managing fines, and more, this week’s Wheat Pete’s Word has some great advice for those frustrated by the forecast.

Have a question you’d like Wheat Pete to address or some field results to send in? Agree/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].


  • Registration is now open for the Ontario Ag Conference
  • 66 recorded sessions and lots of in-person options, too, but limited so register early
  • So much snow fell in some areas of Manitoba and Ontario
  • Brutal for the corn and beans still out. Very wet!
  • Not everywhere, though, but some have a white yard and fields
  • For some farms, it’s been since 1992 that they didn’t combine some corn in October.
  • For those who remember ’92 corn, some of it got harvested in the spring of ’93. But it’s not that bad
  • Some wheat went in October 31st on the frost. How often do you frost seed winter wheat in October?
  • Snow on soybeans means flat soybeans. One farmer said that the last time a big snowfall on beans ate 20 bushels per acre
  • What about lodging in corn? Definitely seeing corn breaking off, let’s hope it’s not below the ear. There’s some really tall corn out there
  • If Lyndsey is a GEM, Pete is a PITR — Pain in the rear, with all his downer talk. Ouch!
  • Mental health IS that important
  • Safety too — but what happens when you do all the right things and it’s the non-farmers whizzing past? Yikes
  • We can only control what we do as farmers
  • Take the time slow down. Think twice, act once. Make sure the lights are working.
  • Dry weather in Argentina, with cracks in the soil up to the elbow (hand-down, not feet-up)
  • Check out The Agronomists from Monday — all about compaction, tires vs tracks, with Nick Dubuc and Marla Riekman
  • Does frost alleviate compaction? Not really, but drought might
  • The upside of really dry soil is you’ve alleviated some compaction, but it only works on the shrinking and swelling clays
  • Horst Bohner reports that some soybeans hit 100 bushel per acre
  • Is it management? Horst says this year it was just timely rainfall more than anything
  • Some field averages on corn coming out at 260 bushels per acre.
  • Yield monitors aren’t always accurate, y’all
  • Must be calibrated — or use a weigh wagon. And moisture matters too
  • Kernel weight this year is really light and test weights are light, and that will impact how the kernels hit the sensor. Different hybrids have different waxiness which impacts yield monitor, too
  • A yield monitor might work to work out a high yield zone or a low yield zone, but not to compare hybrids
  • Does a lack of sunlight impact test weight? Shorter days in October to get a crop to maturity means lighter test weights
  • Plot data is not created equal
  • Pete’s own ’24 wheat crop is a perfect example of the importance of plot site selection and reps
  • DON in the corn crop. Harvest will be key! Check out this 2018 interview David Collins
  • In terms of blending, we need to get the crop utilized and utilized well without major discounts
  • When you get into those high DON fields, you’ll notice more fines. Make sure you drop the fines out, and get the screens on returns out
  • So corn-on-corn fields are showing higher DON levels, corn that was stressed by too much water, and then didn’t get good nodal roots


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