May 14, 2014 – Issue 6

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  • Four the week

    Seeding small

    You can’t control the weather. Seed when you can. Remember, more than half the canola acres last year were seeded after May 20.

    Spray instead. Early weed control pays big time. If too wet to seed, it might not be too wet to spray — but apply at warmer parts of the day.

    Clingy clubroot. Muddy fields increase the amount of soil on equipment. Think about the clubroot risk.

    Seed safe. A short seeding window can mean long hours and extra tension. If stress is becoming unmanageable, use the Farm Stress lines: Saskatchewan 1-800-667-4442 ; Alberta 1-877-303-2642 ; Manitoba 1-866-367-3276

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  • Map of the week

    Forward trajectory May 11

    This “forward trajectory” wind map shows where winds from Southern California are predicted to travel over the next five days. You’ll see they pass through the mid west and up into Manitoba. Forward trajectories also show winds arriving on the Prairies from Mexico, Texas, Kansas and other southern regions this week. South central U.S. is a common area where aster leafhoppers and diamondback moth winter in large numbers. These insects are often carried into Western Canada in spring and summer when the south winds arrive. Source: Owen Olfert, AAFC

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  • May 14 Quiz

    Three questions on seeding date:

    1. Say canola seeded on May 1 has 100% of its yield potential. After what seeding date does canola yield potential drop below 80% of its May 1 level?

    2. Growers have methods to help late-seeded crops mature earlier. Of the four choices below, three are legit, and one is not. Which choice will NOT shorten days to maturity?

    3. Based on Canola Performance Trial data for 2013, roughly how many days can you gain by swapping the latest maturing Argentine hybrid for the earliest maturing Argentine hybrid?

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  • Cold soils? Seed anyway

    Seeding into warmer soils speeds up emergence and makes it more uniform. However, the yield benefits of seeding early May versus late May (most years) are too important to ignore..

    It’s mid May, so put away the soil thermometer. When you get the chance to seed, then seed.

    Seeding into warmer (8-10°C) soils will improve seed survival and have more seed emerging at the same time (as shown in the graph) but this needs to be balanced against the benefits of early seeding. To improve seed survival and speed of emergence in cooler soils, seed shallow and use seed-placed phosphate. Limit all other seed-placed fertilizer.

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  • Seed first or spray weeds?

    Canada thistle

    Early weed control is an important step in profitable canola production. Research on preseed weed control showed that early seeding was less important to yield than early weed control.

    Pre-seed weed control will manage weeds that emerge ahead of seeding, reducing crop competition for light, moisture and nutrients.

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  • The post-seeding, pre-emergence spray option

    Applying a burnoff after seeding but before emergence is a risky option for those who want to get seeding. Consider the following risks with this practice…

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  • Insect update: Cutworm survey

    While checking seeding depth, take a look for cutworms, too.

    While checking your seeding depth, take a look for cutworms at the same time. Another good time to look is around bare patches that show up after emergence. Cutworms could be the cause. Entomologists from across the Prairies are conducting cutworms surveys and are looking for help digging them up.

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  • More moisture, more nutrient, more yield

    Good soil moisture may encourage some growers to increase planned nutrient rates to capture an increase in yield potential. However, before increasing fertilizer rates, you may want to make sure you can get timely delivery of that extra fertilizer. Talk to your supplier. You don’t want to run out of fertilizer and still have 15% of the crop to seed.

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Canola Watch