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Crop Corner – Thoughts on the 2016 Winter Wheat Crop

April 01, 2016

By the time you have read this article, our winter wheat acres will need immediate attention if we are to achieve the high yield expectations that our wheat crop has to offer this spring.  With the excellent fall and winter conditions, winterkill should not have been a problem.  Virtually no nitrogen has been applied to the crop at time of writing this article and it may be late April before field conditions allow equipment to apply nitrogen.  Fast release forms of nitrogen like 28% will be your best option or urea fertilizers with nitrogen stabilizers like Agrotain to protect you from nitrogen volatilization under dry soil conditions.

With the long fall growing period, weeds may be more of a problem this spring and growers should walk their fields to determine the need for eliminating winter annual weeds like yellow rocket and peppergrass.  With the thick crop at hand, the need for controlling spring germinating weeds like ragweed may not be as critical as crop competition should reduce weed pressure!  An early field walk in April should determine the need for a herbicide application in those situations.

My biggest concern for the crop, is the amount of top growth and tillers already present in the crop and the high potential for early season disease problems like powdery mildew and septoria leaf spot.  Weather conditions will determine the need for controlling leaf diseases during the early spring period.  Contact your sales rep to help identify potential disease outbreaks in your crop.

This Crop Corner has been written by Jerry Winnicki, Agronomy Manager at Clark Agri Service.  Jerry can be reached by email jwinnicki@clarkagriservice.com or by phone 905-736-1426