Top Crop Manager

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Dry beans remain in Ontario fields, but excellent quality reported for harvested acres


December 3, 2019
By Top Crop Manager


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As of November 28, five per cent of dry bean acres have remained in Ontario fields when snow fell before harvest was completed. Despite the small remainder that lay out in the fields, dry bean dealers have stated that the quality of the harvested acres are excellent.

2019 was the year for dry beans with relatively low insect and disease pressure and timely rains. Wet, cool planting conditions in April and May delayed corn and soybean planting but worked in favour for dry beans. Ontario saw a 20 per cent increase in dry bean acreage as more producers switched to planting beans in June.

Megan Moran, canola and edible bean specialist with Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA), released a seasonal summary for Ontario’s dry edible bean crop for 2019, covering the planting season, major insects and diseases and harvest and yield. In addition to a seasonal summary, Moran has been working on a field-scale project is looking at the effects of variable seeding rates on yields and economic returns for dry beans.

Highlights from the summary include:

  • Acreage of dry beans in 2019 increased approximately 20 per cent over 2018 acreage, with notable growth in acres of white and adzuki beans. The growth could’ve been a result of challenging planting conditions for corn and soybeans that made growers switch to beans.
  • Dry bean emergence varied widely. Adequate moisture in many fields resulted in excellent emergence. For others, wet and cool conditions, often below 20 C, resulted in very slow emergence and poor stands.
  • Most regions had timely rains during pod fill, however some areas had a very wet start then became overly dry during summer resulting in a stressed crop.
  • Unfortunately, some producers also had hail in early October that caused significant damage to dry bean fields.
  • Reports of root rot during early plant growth stages were common.
  • Bacterial diseases were not necessarily more abundant this year, but it is important to note that researchers are reporting an increase in incidences of bacterial brown spot (BBS).
  • Insect pressure was lower this year than in 2018.
  • To meet the requirements of end users, dealers are no longer allowing the use of glyphosate as a pre-harvest herbicide treatment. Cloudy conditions through October made it difficult to time Eragon application when it will provide the best dry down of weeds and bean plants, which is during warm, sunny conditions prior to 5:00 p.m.
  • Harvest was about 85 per cent complete by mid-October. Snow fell before harvest was complete, and at the time of this report there are about 5 per cent of dry bean acres remaining in the field.
  • Dry bean dealers have stated quality is excellent, and that a large percentage of white beans were delivered with less than 4 per cent pick.

Read the full dry bean seasonal summary 2019 here.