Wheat Pete's Word, Dec 13: Late tillers, loaves per acre, surface-applied N, and a rough voice


It turns out that even Peter “Wheat Pete” Johnson is mortal, and in this week’s podcast you’ll likely end up feeling a little sorry for Mr. Johnson, as his voice has fallen victim to the winter woes.

Nonetheless, our intrepid host of Wheat Pete’s Word still has managed to record this episode and in it he tackles some key questions, observations, and challenges that have come across his desk in the last week. From N use efficiency, to waking wheat, to tillage jobs, Johnson covers it all.


  • Poor Pete has no voice
  • Have patience with field work
  • 31 loaves of bread for a family of six would require how many acres? 5x more land than now!
  • When did Ontario hit 50 bushels per acre?
  • Don’t forget! Go to winter air pressure in your tires. It’ll help in the spring
  • New tech: nozzle-by-nozzle monitoring
  • Singles vs duals on the combine and soil health. Fat singles can do a better job than narrow duals
  • Pay attention to compaction, please
  • Is wheat still growing? Another tiller? Do we want it to?
  • Warm rain in November can mean continued growth, and that might be bad
  • Cold injury exists
  • Does wheat need K for N use, too, like corn? Not nearly the same
  • Chloride and disease connection at issue
  • Heavy clay is a real challenge for reduced or zero till
  • Plowing alfalfa can give you good kill
  • The chisel plow doesn’t kill weeds as much
  • Watch for the erosion risk
  • Corn stand after chisel plow was spotty
  • Where does crop N come from — it’s a good question
  • Band vs broadcast
  • Nitrate N is taken up better than urea or ammonium fertilizer
  • Should side-dress be stabilized? In-ground and covered, maybe shouldn’t be. Interesting thought process
  • Be thankful we don’t have mice as a pest, y’all


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