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Winter wheat harvest near complete

Aug. 28, 2014 – Provincial winter wheat harvest is approximately 95 per cent completed, according to Peter Johnson in the latest field crop report from OMAF.

Winter wheat harvest provincially is now about 95 per cent completed; harvest in shorter season areas is about 75 per cent completed, according to Peter Johnson. Provincially, yields are close to average and generally better than expected. Quality is good for the most part with low Fusarium levels. Straw yields are lower than expected, resulting in high demand and higher prices. 

Timely planting of winter wheat will be a challenge in some areas, but seeding wheat after edible bean, cannery pea, spring barley or oat harvest provides an opportunity for early planting. Where wheat is planted more than 10 days prior to the optimum date, seeding rate should be decreased by 25 per cent. Using lower seeding rates in this situation reduces risk of lodging, snow mould and increases yield potential. Wheat planted after a later than normal soybean harvest will require seeding rates to be increased to 1.8 to 2.0 million seeds per acre. Visit for the 2014 Winter Wheat Variety Performance Report. 

Spring cereal harvest has made good progress in the past week after being delayed in most areas, reports Scott Banks. Yields have been average to slightly above average for most spring cereals. Lodging is an issue in some fields. Fusarium in spring wheat continues to be a concern. Keep combine wind speeds high to clean as many damaged kernels out of the sample as possible. High wind speeds can reduce toxin levels by as much as 50 per cent.

Edible beans and canola
Spring canola harvest has started week of August 25 with early reported yields 1-1.25 tonne/ac, according to Brian Hall. To minimize pod shattering losses with direct harvest, do not delay harvest. Field losses from heavy rain, wind or hail can be high, particularly if the crop is not heavy and knits together. Seed moisture can drop rapidly, often by two to three per cent throughout the day. Harvesting in early morning or evening when the crop is slightly damp can help reduce harvest shatter losses. Set the combine reel speed to match ground speed and position it as far back as possible so that shattering occurs over the pan. Pre-harvest herbicide can be used to even out crop dry down, but be prepared to harvest when the crop is ready, to prevent increasing shattering losses. In fields with adequate plant population but uneven maturity, the typical time of swathing is 60 per cent seed colour change on the main stem. If the crop is thin, then more yield will come from branches, so time of swathing should be based on whole plant seed colour change rather than just main stem.

Edible beans are maturing rapidly and harvest of cranberry and other early maturing types will begin this week. Scout later maturing fields of white and black bean fields for anthracnose. Only in late-maturing fields during green pod stage is control worthwhile, but observe the 30 day preharvest interval with fungicides for anthracnose. Avoid harvesting heavily infected areas of a field, and notify your bean dealer prior to delivery. Weather conditions have been suitable for common bacterial blight. Blight infection that spreads to pods can result in discolouration of seed. There is no control at time of year. Do not retain seed from infected fields for planting next season. Adzuki beans are being particularly hard hit by a new-to-Ontario blight, know as bacterial brown spot.

When using a preharvest herbicide, remember to check with your dealer on approved products. When beans are direct harvested mechanical seed damage increases rapidly when moisture levels are below 16 per cent. During harvest, monitor cracked seed coat damage as seed moisture content can decline quickly throughout the day. Make a diluted solution of household bleach using one part bleach to five parts water and soak a bean sample for five to 10 minutes. Blot dry and count the number of damaged seeds. Seeds with damaged seed coats will take up moisture quickly, and will appear swollen or have wrinkled seed coats.

Greg Stewart notes that development of most of the corn crop in Ontario still lags significantly behind normal. Concerns that the crop will black layer continue to exist. Most of the crop is somewhere between the milk stage and dough stage. The end of the dough stage is marked by a few dents appearing on the kernels at the base of the ear. The time requirements from that stage until black layer is generally 30 to 35 days.

August 29, 2014  By Stefanie Croley


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