Campbellford Farm Supplies
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February notes from the Stores
SPRING IS AROUND THE CORNER! So it is time to do some planning.   Our 3 locations are now taking Chick orders.  If you want Ready-To-Lay Birds, order now to ensure delivery.   Did you want to thicken up your lawn, hay stand or full story
February 13, 2016
Attention Hunters!
ATTENTION HUNTERS!   Campbellford Farm Supply will soon have in Stock “Rack Stacker Whitetail Deer Attractants” Looking to attract that big Buck or Bull ?  We  will have Buck Slop and Bull Slop as well as Blaze and  full story
September 28, 2015
Customer Appreciation Day
Friday, October 23rd Campbellford and Warkworth Saturday, October 24th Madoc   full story
September 28, 2015
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Enough with the little woolly creatures, let’s talk crop.  So all the reps have Chemical Programs to help you decide on what is best for you.  Now I have my favorites as does everyone from Jeff to Ken to Chris.  Listed below are chemical & seed things to consider as you make your growing plan for this year. (my thoughts only)

1.  Roundup by itself is not the answer. Weed pressure early can rob yield from beans & corn.  If you wait to spray good sized weeds you             have already stole some money from yourself.

2.  Know your weed problems.  Either conventional or not, knowing what weeds you have all the time helps with making the right choices.

3.  Horse tail. Treat it like a Christmas tree - you’re always going to have it. (usually tile helps but not always)

4.  Fungicides.  Am I covering leaf diseases or going for white mold?  It is not always the same.

5.  Trials—every farm should do one. No this does not mean plots.  A side by side on seed or fertilizer or fungicide. (we can help you with this)

6.  Know the right population for your seed as well as the best location for it to work ( read number 5)

7.  Fertilizer go over your program, ask questions, should I side dress, is there enough there, best application.

8.  Tillage,,,,,,  don't ask me, I am more confused now than ever before.. Yes no surprise, I know.

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     Phil is getting ready to sort through the corn seed & it will be coming your way soon provided we have your paper work.  What a dog's breakfast so to speak. You have (as an example only) 3066 in fungicide as well as Accerlon as well as Fortenza. Take all the products like that & with some farmers getting all 3 - oh my.  On the treater side for beans, Phil & Chis are going to team up to get them treated when weather turns.  Hopefully with the 2 of them they will get them through quickly if weather co-operates.

     We have lots of supply on almost everything (beans & corn), so we can look after all your needs.  Same on small grains as well. Inventory is solid.  If you want seed & have not ordered, might be a good idea to do it sooner rather than later.



It is midway through February and we have made it a good ways through winter.  What have we learned so far this meeting season?  An underlying theme has been the focus of management to a site specific nature.  Not all barns/cows/farms/fields are the same & shouldn’t really be treated the same if we are to maximize profitability.  There is no ‘silver bullet’ that will correct all issues & deliver exceptional results year after year.

     We need to identify what the limiting factors are; is it as simple as poor soil analysis or a lame cow that needs her hoof trimmed?  Or is it more detailed - more uniform corn emergence or increased laying time of cows?  Whether it’s in the barn or out in the field, there are numerous variables that need to be monitored, managed & recorded for future reference. We need to have an idea what has been done & what are the greatest factors holding us back.

     All of this doesn’t necessarily mean more inputs.  Sometimes it can mean refocusing those same inputs to where they will give the biggest bang for the buck.  Greg Stewart (Maizex) has spoken about increasing population, nitrogen & fungicide applications on corn numerous times this year. Some hybrids were highly responsive to greater inputs & others were not.  Does this mean one hybrid is better than the other or one system is better than the other?  No, not at all.  It does however increase the importance of creating a crop plan to maximize performance.  Horst Bohner (OMAFRA) described how different tillage, fungicide & fertility packages all had different results depending on where the plot was grown.  Nigel Cook (University of Wisconsin) described how different management techniques need to be utilized together to maximize production & health of the cow.  Bottom line - there isn’t one single thing that will guarantee a ‘win’ every year in every situation.

     Every producer tries their best to grow the best crop, produce the most milk or beef & manage the risk throughout the year to be profitable.  It’s no small task.  As I say - it’s the “fun of farming”.  If it was simple & easy, everyone would do it.  Evaluating your business & identifying the strengths that will drive growth & the weaknesses that will limit progress is an important aspect which can be a significant game changer. At the Farm Supply, we cherish the opportunity to help you identify those opportunities on your farm. We believe that your success will drive our success and as we have been reminded this winter, identifying the areas for improvement can greatly enhance your success and profitability.



Agriculture has 3 seasons: planting season, harvest season and meeting season.  As we turn the calendar to a new year we find ourselves in the heart of this third season.  We hope you will be able to attend our Annual Crop Meeting on Thursday February 4th in Codrington. Our feature speaker this year is Greg Stewart from Maizex Seeds. 

     The second phase of this third season - planning - is one of the most important for crop producers.  As we get out to some of these meetings, talking with fellow producers and hearing the “experts”, we need to be thinking of how we can apply some of this knowledge and build on past experiences.  This year we also need to plan for our seed treatment usage.  We cannot ship you seed if we do not have your required neonic paperwork.

    One of the largest challenges from the 2015 crop year was weed control.  It was a near perfect storm of weather that broke down chemicals & reduced their efficacy, compounded by late weed flushes. What are we going to do to try & clean up some of these problem fields in 2016?  If you don’t have a plan developed – with a Plan B too – now is the time to be working on one.  What are the problem weed species?  Are there any resistant biotypes?  With crop prices coming back from their lofty highs many growers are looking for places to “trim the fat” in costs. Research suggests upwards of 50% yield reduction due to weed interference is very possible.  This can mean upwards of 500% ROI to weed control, even with today’s prices using conservative values (150bu corn at $4.50/bu with 50% yield reduction).  Trimming too far on weed control could have you haunted worse than Scrooge next Christmas & none of us want that. 



As harvest rolls on, it’s time to turn our thoughts to lessons learned, successes and failures that was the 2015 crop year, and begin to plan for 2016.  The biggest change that affects us all for the 2016 season is the new seed treatment regulations.  As such, for the 2016 planting season you will have 3 basic options available, 2 of which involve a farmer’s best friend “paperwork”.  Before any seed orders can be processed we need to know your seed treatment intentions and corresponding documentation.  Unlike past years, we aren’t able to put a tentative order into the system to update later.  To ensure supply of your favourite varieties in your chosen treatment package, orders need to be filed into the system as soon as possible.  Early order discount deadlines this year are November 25th for Maizex and December 18th for NK with both brands early pay deadlines at Christmas.

     Attempting to be an optimist in all of this, looking at your cropping options today and developing a plan early on will have you better prepared come spring. Let’s develop a strategy, determine your seed requirements and try to minimize in season revisions and returns. If you are not familiar with your options yet, please contact your Campbellford Farm Supply representative to assist you.



Well here it comes, what I will call the most difficult crop selling season I will ever experience.  Let’s just say thanks to the government -it’s not as easy as just ordering seed.  I know at all of our events we have discussed these new regulations, but for those who have not heard or need a refresher here it comes.

     First thing - we can help you get through this fall ordering, but you have to choose how.

  #1 - You can sign a seed declaration that will get you 50% of your seed treated with Cruiser (for this example).  This means half of your bean acres and half of your corn will be treated.

  #2 -You can do a self assessment on pests and if you can recover pests in your trap you can have 100% on all acres.  The problem is that trapping these insects is going to become tougher at this time of year.

     So for this year (and it will change for next again) on the corn side, there is a product called Fortenza that is not exactly like Accerlon and Cruiser but can be used to control wire worm and seed corn maggot.

     It costs a little bit more depending on your seed company, but it will give you protection.  On the bean side, it is either 50% Cruiser and 50% fungicide or do a pest assessment to get it all treated. Soybean aphids will be a concern with the fungicide only treatment.  Now if you are as confused as I am or you just want help to clarify things, contact your CFS Rep and they will help you through it.  Seed pricing has just come out for next year from both NK and Maizex.  This now allows us to start taking orders.  Great time to go over both treatments and varieties. Shawn


     Due to unforeseen production issues, there is a tight supply of forage seed for the 2016 season. Several production obstacles have lowered the forecast of the global forage seed harvest. The seed industry is striving to meet the demand but is encouraging producers to get their orders in early to ensure they receive the variety and amount of seed desired. Please speak to your Farm Supply consultant about your forage plan for 2016, the varieties that fit your operation and pre-order to ensure you get the product you need. Chris



I am writing this the day after the Maizex plot day at Glovers. Those who attended got a great chance to meet the Maizex team. Neonics again were front and centre and will be all fall.  I won't follow up on this topic but will say the CFS reps are prepped and available to go over this with you to prepare you for next year.  At the plot day, some growers got to meet Shawn Winters for the first time.  Shawn is the head of the Corn Division, trying to find the next big hybrid and as one customer said "this boy is sharp".  Of course I replied that with a name like that....  Also having Greg Stewart on board as head Agronomist coming from OMAFRA does not hurt Maizex going forward for sure. Oh ya, just remembered old C W Taylor, our DSM, has been giving us great support as well.  Mapleseed also talked on the day about cover crops. Our area  seems to be the slowest to pick this up in Ontario. Great way to give back support to your soil.

     Wheat sales have been strong this fall thanks to the addition of C&M seeds to our wheat portfolio. We have lots in stock at the store, so get some in the ground and keep that rotation going.

     A lot of growers have some side by sides on beans and corn, so give us a call. We would love to help you get the results.


This month will be a column about what's old, what's new, what coming up, and what might be coming around the corner.  So we will start with the Old - that would be me.  I had the chance to help out the C'ford fair judging crops again this year.  Not my favourite job. You’re always going to make someone think they should have been 1st, and they should think that way.  Very impressed with how many entries they had this year. Anything from TMR samples to sheaths of grain.  There was a lot of tough classes this year for sure with Bradley Bay Farms winning the overall & Matt Petherick a close second. Congrats to all who brought samples. I would encourage more people to get some in for next year & have some fun.  Oh, and I say that because they are due to have a new judge. Any takers?

     What is New ? CFS/WFS/MFS  have become a C&M dealer.  See Philip’s blurb below on the different wheat varieties.  Speaking of wheat, Jeff is looking for wheat for our mill.  As most ads read "WE WILL PAY TOP DOLLAR"! Of course I will leave that for you and Jeff to decide what top dollar is.  If you  have some, please call the CFS store & talk with Jeff.

     What is Coming up?  Maizex Plot day - Some may know this, but Maizex in conjunction with CFS and Robert Glover have a corn plot close to Maizing acres . Robert has worked with me on this spot in the past & again this year with one twist.  Greg Stewart the new head of Agronomy for Maizex is looking after the plot this year.  The plot contains 4 varieties that where picked with what our growers are, or should be growing, with 3066 leading the way again.  There are different population checks as well as fertilizer checks with split application & different levels of N added. Maizex, as well as myself, are very hopeful that we can showcase this plot to you the first part of September.  It will be a great day to spend with us. They are planning on a morning stop at Maizeing Acres for a tour & market talk, then lunch at the plot & a plot tour in afternoon,.  Hope to see you on  September 9th.

     What may be Coming Around The Corner.  Andrew Hodges from Ceresco has been up for a couple of days for the first part of August &  reported finding white mold in fields.  Now if you have not seen Andrew yet & are growing Ceresco, don't worry, he will be out to see if he can find mold in your fields too.  Of course, the next week I had to try see if he knew what he was talking about & I even found some in the Port Hope area.  What is scary is that this was a headland that had beans last year. Oh, you are saying that makes sense...... how about a 2 application of Stratego Pro—Oh....  .Now don't go cancelling your trip to Hawaii that we know you cash croppers take every year. There was not a lot, but there were dead plants in the canopy.  Cross your fingers & your toes if you can.

     Another note on what may be coming to you is festulolium.  I have had the chance to harvest it this year on my farm & have been impressed.  Now I am not a pasture or hay expert. I will leave that to others in our area.  The yield has been great by my standards. I had the chance on Saturday night over some pops to chat with Matt Thrower who is the Maple Seed District Manager. I think that it is safe to say that it heads out fairly early, 30 days max if not a little sooner.  In a dairy rotation for cutting, it would work amazing. Matt said guys have got 18% protein on a grass - wild!  What he also mentioned was that there may be a new version coming for guys like me that might want to keep the stand in for longer than 3 years.  This would give two great options, but I encourage you to try it for hay or pasture.  We will have pictures up on our website for you to check out.



     First I will start off this month’s edition in the newsletter by thanking customers for their kind words on past newsletters. I am also told some of you enjoy reading it!  A lot of you mention that you read it all the time & like the info but also like some humour tossed in as well.  Now the problem is... that if no one reads it, I wouldn’t have to rack my small brain trying to come up with next month’s edition. That is the toughest part. 

     So you wanna be a farmer?  In Ohio & Iowa, they are trying to teach their crops how to swim.  In the west, they are praying for the rain in those states to come their way.  They are so dry that cows are going to market because there is just nothing to feed them anymore. So you can imagine the crops out there.  As we also know, the  wildfires are out of control as well.  In our area, we have already experienced both sides.  Long dry start to the spring, followed by crazy amount of rainfall that has left us with some corn & bean fields being uneven & pale looking.

     Even the markets are at odds. Are we going up or down?  Bad conditions in the US, so we start up, but then other countries have a surplus, so we start back down.  Who really knows?

     I drove past some hay fields that had ruts with water lying in them.  I, like usual, cut at the wrong time & couldn’t even get my wrapped hay dry enough.

     The use of neonicotinoids or the lack of use is here to stay.  You will have to take a course to be able to continue to use some for at least a while.  This will make you a pest specialist!

     Oh and don’t forget about that frost we had - SO you wanna be a farmer?  On that note, for those that said yes, (because you have the disease) read on.

2 topics that our sales team wanted to touch on:  First is fungicide on beans.  Ah yes, that topic of do I or don’t I spray this.  So last year everyone should have said yes, probably only 5 % of my customer acres did. So how about this year? Here are the numbers.  Cost including application for Stratego Pro is $25/acre.  What will it control - Asian Soybean Rust, Frogeye Leaf Spot, Brown Spot &Stem Blight.  What will it suppress - Charcoal Rot & White Mould.

     Why do I like Stratego Pro – the cost is cheaper & a 40 day residual in beans.  They claim a 8% yield so 40 Bu  x 8% = 3.2 bu.  Presence of mould, gain would be higher.  Timing is between R2 & R3 so actually later than some of the other products.  However, if going twice, start at R1 and spray again 14 days later.

     Comes down to buying insurance, maybe you bought crop insurance or maybe you spray crop insurance, or maybe you sit & wait & hope that you don’t need either this year.  That choice I will leave with you.

     The second topic is creep feeding and I have included a good write up from Purina on the other side of the page.  I trust you are enjoying the read for this month. Remember to relax a little before the harvest season begins—it is just around the corner!


     Let’s start with spring rush.  Spring dropped the green flag & put the pedal to the metal.  I can’t remember when growers had corn & beans both done by May 7th, but there were quite a few of you that made this happen.  Now as I type this there is a chance of frost & I know bean fields that are out of the ground.  Let’s hope when you read this they are still green.  Speaking of soybeans, let’s not forget that shot of fungicide at first flower.  Including application cost and Stratego Pro, $25 will provide you with white mould coverage and plant health.  It also works the same on wheat spraying close to flag leaf time to keep your straw cleaner and less dusty.

     I have been experimenting with a new grass called Festulolium.  It is a cross out of Italian Rye grass which has a softer stalk. It is supposed to have good re-growth and persistence up to 3 years.  I have tried 10 acres myself & am pleased up to now for sure.  Last I checked, it was higher than my alfalfa.  Protein is also supposed to be good.  There are a couple other customers that have it in as well, so we should get some good feedback this year.

     We have the #1 timothy from General Seed (Treasure) & Festulolium from Maple Seed .We can blend grass seed in one of our stores to get the blend you want.  Just give them some notice.

     Our twine & wrap prices look competitive—so bring on the hay.




There is a train rolling through Ontario, if you listen hard enough you can hear it no matter where you are.  The train is being driven by public perception &  it is starting to get out of control.

     GMO, non GMO is for the consumer to make their choice & everyone should be fine with that.  What if an adult gives his opinion to a child.  True story-In an afternoon class at a public school near you an adult (not sure what background) comes into a classroom of grade 7 or 8 students & gives a talk on why GMO can be harmful to them.  Really, is that what our tax dollar should be paying for to educate these young people on GMO? Perhaps the school should be focused on teaching the science behind the technology so that the kids become educated rather than indoctrinated.

     Same thing is happening on the neonic bus. They are trying to drive over farmers without knowing all the facts about what they are doing. They are messing with a lot of farm profit on this decision. Sure there are some farmers not using any & that is great. That’s what drives those niche markets, but if we all have to stop using them, then there will be less yield & less profit because we will all be in the same basket.  Farmers have to be heard. Farmers have to educate the public on this before it is too late.

     My boy Phil has fired up the treater & is underway. Those of you looking to take your beans in a wagon or truck for the bulk discount price, contact Phil or your rep to get your place in line.  Those that are taking it in totes be ready for them in the near future. Phil will treat the conventional beans first, then move to roundup. 

     We still have a lot of seed in stock: beans, corn &small grains. You need it, we have got it.  Spring has sprung. Let’s get ready to get at it!



As a little more warm weather starts showing up, we get some signs that spring will be here sometime.  With that, we are gearing up to get seed out to everyone in a timely manner.  Phil may have contacted you or will be calling you for your corn seed delivery.  Soybeans will obviously be later into April before they will be shipped out.

Jeff, at this time, is working on chemical pricing. We should have it by the end of March and then we will get it out to you and go over programs.

One program that I would like to discuss is your nitrogen program. I think more and more data is showing that a 2 pass program is the best way to meet your corn’s need to maximize yield.  Enough data is showing that 40% of your nitrogen is needed from tassel on to make the cob, as well as fill starch levels.  Nitrogen needs to be there at the end to help dry down in the fall.

The loss of nitrogen in your crop is always a discussion as well as how much to put down and when it is utilized.  I heard a presentation on some Agrotain products.  Agrotain is added to your nitrogen either in a broadcast form or you can add it to UAN.  It is designed to slow down the release of the nitrogen in the air and the soil to maximize the availability of what  you are applying.  The cost is around $8 to $13 per acre depending on your program.  If you are banding your nitrogen  into the ground it can and should be used to keep it available for longer periods of time as well as a second application with drop nozzles or steamers.  If you would like more info, please contact your rep and they will be happy to assist you.

It is hard to believe, but I am coming up to start my 10th year at CFS.  I remember the days when I worked 3 days a week and Justin Dorland worked 3 days a week.  There have been so many changes in those years - even Jeff has changed. I think his biggest change is less hair on top (maybe stress, not sure).



february update

I thought, as we suffer through the cold, I would pass on an article that I came across discussing different silage varieties.   Anyone that is growing or thinking of it should read this article.  This applies to beef, dairy and sheep.  In the end, ask yourself if your sample results are giving you back these numbers.  The article was written by Francis Glenn.                                                                                                                           Shawn

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Feedback: Current silage testing methods biased against Leafy Hybrids

I am the breeder of the “leafy” and “leafy floury” hybrids being sold as corn silage specific seed. The article, titled “Corn Silage 2015: Now’s the time to plan for next year’s crop” (December 2014 edition of Dairy Herd Management), quotes Ev Thomas, Oak Point Agronomics, cautioning corn silage growers that leafy and leafy floury hybrids have “not yet produced a consistent advantage in NDF digestibility.” Randy Shaver, University of Wisconsin-Madison dairy nutritionist, states that leafy and leafy floury hybrids had “lower NDF digestibility.”

My response is: Compared to what? While their statements are true when comparing leafies to brown midribs (BMRs), this is not the case when comparing leafies to dual-purpose hybrids, which occupy about 70% of the corn silage market. The suggestion that BMR is a superior silage hybrid type is somewhat academic, given that the successful growing of a BMR crop is often fraught with difficulty.

One must remember that NDFd is but one criteria to be considered when selecting silage corn. Leafies have demonstrated dependably high yields that are achieved at lower plant populations, high total plant digestibility (including high starch digestibility), and a wide harvest window that results from slow kernel drydown matched with moderate plant drydown. Leafies can also be fed after only 30 days in the bunker.

The article also suggested that one should look to local and regional trial data (which includes quality testing) when selecting silage hybrids. However, leafies are not widely entered into these trials because standard testing methods are geared towards assessing dual-purpose and BMR hybrids rather than leafies. As such, the test results do not accurately reflect the unique benefits of leafies.

Here are three reasons why leafies are not entered into state trials:

1)A leafy plant needs more space in the corn canopy because it is larger than that of bmr and dual purpose grain hybrids. State trials are conducted at about 35,000 ppa. Leafies at that population produce silage having less starch and lower NDFd than if planted at the recommended 28,000 to 30,000 ppa.

2)The quality tests performed in conjunction with the state trials attempt to provide a measurement of total starch content through Near Infra-Red (NIR) testing. However the NIR formulas used to determine starch content in a sample have been calibrated mostly using dual purpose corn which has a higher concentration of vitreous starch. The result is that these tests estimate the presence of vitreous starch in the samples but inaccurately estimate the presence of floury starch which is abundant in Leafies and Leafy Flouries.

3)Not only is the total starch content for leafies inaccurately reported by NIR testing in state trials, but there is no measure of rumen starch digestibility or total starch digestibility in the comparison of varieties.

Shaver recognized that the leafies may have improved starch digestibility, but he suggested that more data needs to be generated to support those claims. It will be difficult, however, to generate meaningful data on starch digestibility using existing testing methods.

Leafies have been selected to have a higher proportion of soft white floury starch as opposed to the higher proportion of hard vitreous starch found in bmr and dual purpose types. During the normal chopping and processing at harvest, floury starch naturally breaks up into a smaller particle size than vitreous starch. As such, leafies provide an advantage for rumen available starch in the production of milk.

However, the wet chemistry starch test currently used to determine starch availability starts by drying samples and then finely grinding them. This makes the vitreous starch pieces contained in BMR and dual-purpose hybrids smaller than they would be after the normal chopping and processing. As a result, this gives them an inflated test result for rumen starch availability. Of course, a cow has neither a drier nor a fine grinder in her digestive system.

The misinformation created by current testing methods which estimate starch content and starch digestibility only works to the disadvantage of dairy farmers. It is time to start the discussion on how to fix these starch analysis problems.



january update


Here we go for 2015.  I have come to realize that change is going to happen, and we can't usually stop it. Sometimes change is good, sometimes it isn't. It is just the way the world goes.  Back in the 70's, Pioneer corn stood tall while everyone else was falling down, and everyone grew Pioneer.  Jump to the 2015, still a good company just not dominant anymore.  The other week I was watching an old classic hockey game between Oilers and Flames.  In the NHL today, I saw at least 20 penalties that could have been called.  With changes, the NHL has allowed skilled players to be skilled players.


     So by now, your thinking, Shawn were are you going and get on with it.  I am coming up 9 years with CFS and I have seen some frustrating times at the start for sure.  When I started there was Justin Dorland and myself both working part time (Justin taught me everything I know). Now we have a very good group of people working on the sales side with Ken Heffernan, Erin Pettey (our Dairy Lead), Chris MacFarlane who recently joined us on Crop and Beef side and Sue Rutledge on Horse and Crop.  Since my start, we have added the Warkworth store as well as the Madoc store.  We brought in Mycogen Seeds that we have since replaced with Maizex Seeds.  We then brought in Ceresco IP Beans.  We dealt with NK Seeds, Maple Seed and General Seed throughout the time.  I feel we have a great line up of companies behind us on the seed side as well as Purina on the feed side to allow us to continue to support you for 2015 and beyond.


     Chris told me the other day at the store that we had 3 seasons - planting season, harvest season and meeting season.  So on that note, stay tuned for upcoming Crop and Dairy meetings, with possible Beef and Sheep as well.


     I wish everyone a Happy and Healthy 2015 and we will work with you to make if as profitable as it can be!




 november update


     Early order is this month so we need to get orders into the system.  NK is 5% & Maizex is 7%.  I know it is early, but if needed, we can change it down the road.  I have been sending crop information out through email.  If you would like to be on this list, please e-mail me & I will get you on the list.  E-mail is an easy way to get plot information as well.            




 october update


Pencil to paper brings me to crop side

     Batten down the hatches this may get rough.  2015, I should plant…. Well fill in the blank—it may not look good.

     Corn is showing no signs of making money & if they ever get out the beans they have stored overseas lookout & wheat oh yah wheat.

     Good thing for now is the long warm spell we had in September which should make corn finish.  Low bushel weight will be an issue in some spots but at least it will finish.  The long warm spell might have hurt the beans a little, with the fact that a hard frost might have helped them get off the field quicker.

     Bean yields are anywhere from 20 to 60 bushels.  This year with the planting conditions, lack of heat and abundance of moisture, mold played a big factor in these numbers being wide spread.

     Seeing a lot of mold spores on the top of the ground. If you had mold, don’t work the field this spring.  Also, it would be good to rotate as well. Try to do your best to keep mold out of the field as long as possible.  Once you have it, you have it.




august update


BEANS - I figured I would start on the bean side of things for this month.  IP & Roundup Beans for the most part look good.  However, with the amount of rain we have had weeds in both types have been hard to stop.  I have seen equal amounts of weedy Roundup fields as I have of IP fields.  I had quite a few calls about bean population in late spring. Germination was not good, but beans have the power to adapt and fill in.  Most of those fields look good.

     Aphids got drowned away or Cruiser sent them packing except for a few here & there, but nothing major to speak of.  Mold you say, oh yah mold is everywhere.  In the last 2 weeks, between calls & being in the fields, I have seen lots of white mold.  Large canopy and wet conditions are prime to produce mold.  Nothing you can do now, but that is where the Acapela or another product like Allegro can help if sprayed early.

     WHEAT - Most yields have been good with a good amount of straw.  Make sure you take advantage of putting back down a cover crop.  It can be as simple as broadcasting mixed grain or planting radish.  Building organic matter never hurts.

     Ok, so here is some info I have heard lately.  Peter Johnson says that we need a late frost to get the corn finished for this year.  A lot of the fruit trees are not very full this year. This is causing growers headaches because of loss of income, but it has many old-timers thinking that this will be a milder winter.

     And this one is mine… Give us some more heat!  They can say we are equal in heat units, but when they start counting the first week of May and the seed doesn’t go in the ground to the end of May, the calculation can be a bit deceiving. How many nights did you turn your air conditioner on this year or walk outside first thing in the morning with a sweater?  Corn weather - I think not. Shawn

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    Thank goodness the Winter Wheat is off!  Now onto the next project…Hey Wait.  Why not put a cover crop back on that bare wheat ground.

     Mapleseed is offering ‘Jackhammer Radish’ for fall & winter cover.  Use 6-7lb/acre with seed drill or 8-10lb/acre Broadcast.  You’ll see seedling in days.  ‘Jackhammer Radish’ holds Nitrogen in for the following season, adds organic matter, controls erosion and aerates soil.  You can even graze the stuff.

Jackhammer Radish-$2.86/lb--Jackhammer Radish Blend-$2.49/lb

P.S. Festulolium ‘Perseus’  - This hybrid grass is being promoted as a wonder crop.  Someone needs to plant a small sward of it and then drive it like they stole it to find out how it really works.  Any takers?







may update


Spring has sprung and everyone is going mad at planting.  This spring resembles last spring, but we are still ahead of the game up to now.

   By now most should have made their decision about the wheat fields - whether to keep them or not.   For the ones you keep, look after them. weed control and fungicide will go along way towards yield.

   Phil has been treating beans steadily for 4 weeks now & for the most part things have gone well.  Having seed treated into a gravity wagon has been great and appreciated by us as well a little savings for you.

   On the bean front, if you have received pallets with beans on them they have to be returned. Also, only NK soybean totes need to be sent back to us.

   Everyone has their own opinion, but if you are reading this now your corn should be no higher than 2750 max going in the ground, and if you don’t like drying charges, may be lower than that.  We have a good supply of 2700 CHU and lower in warehouse.

   We still have a good supply of beans and grain if needed.  Chemical is going out the door big time.  If you need help on recommendations, call Jeff, I don’t think he is that busy these days.

   It is time to start thinking about fungicides on corn & beans. If you have had white mold in the past, you really should plan to protect that expensive bean crop.

   The U.S. is ahead on planting at this time last year and all projections (and I did say projections) are that corn prices will drop going forward.

   On the bean side, there is an article that a company in Quebec is set to purchase 450,000 tonnes of soybeans and canola throughout Canada for crushing and refining and is the only one in Quebec, article said.

Now they have to find them. Good luck to them.




 april update


The way this spring is shaping up, it could be another one of those years when everything happens at once.  There are some things you can do to avoid the log jam.  Make sure you have taken delivery of your seed.  Get your bagged fertilizer ordered and in your drive shed. Have a plan in place for your herbicide program to avoid having it delay your seeding.  Make sure your equipment is in good repair and ready to head to the field.  Good preparation will put you in a much better place when the inevitable rush begins





march update


Well here I am writing my March newsletter and snow is whipping by the window and another 10 to 15 cm expected to fall.  Oh yeah and minus 19 temperature, but at some point the snow will be gone and we will be getting on with putting crops in the ground.

     Are you planning on planting grass seed?  Start right here.  Both Mapleseed and General Seed have has some very nice options that will work for you from common to top proprietary varieties. There has been talk that they may do away with the Ontario trials for Alfalfa.  General has already pulled out of the Ontario trials but still have varieties in the US trials.  Just ask your neighbour how good our alfalfa is.

     The old joke that there is no agriculture this side of the 400 keeps showing through with another proof of that being that Kemptville College may be closing its doors.  It is not for sure, but it looks like the end is coming for that old college.

     2014 is looking more promising for a lot of farmers than what we initially were led to believe.  On the crop side, beans are staying strong and seem to be pulling corn along for the ride.  Cattle prices are strong and even pigs are making money again - who would have seen that coming.  Sheep you say, remember Shawn has sheep so that market is not as strong as it needs to be.

     If you are growing conventional beans, pick your chemical program and lock it in.  Conventional chemicals are going to sell out with the high number of IP acres across the province.  We now have programs and pricing to help you make the right choice.  As for the rest of the spray programs, we can help you with your corn and Roundup Ready beans as well.

     Remember, we still have some small grain contracts if you are thinking of growing oats or barley.  We also have lots of corn and soybean seed still available if needed to help get ready for spring planting.




january update


Well here comes 2014, and it may not be as nice as the last couple years according to my somewhat pessimistic nature. Looking at crop progress reports from other countries, beans seem to be good, but corn is having growing issues. This may mean bean prices are going to keep tumbling down. Corn may move up a little, but $200 seems a fairy tale right now. Speculation is the word for 2014. Will corn go below $3 per bushel and where will beans end up for a price? Will all the new growers of Ceresco beans be happy? Will more people start growing small grains again because of inputs? Where will fertilizer prices go? (If you are thinking down, don't be to quick to think that.) Will Phil have any hair left after this spring treating beans? (Jeff's is almost gone now so cant compare with his.) Will the Maple Leaf's finally win the cup this year.???


December update


   Well 2014 is around the corner.  It is hard to believe that another year is behind us.  I appreciate the opportunity I have had to work with all of my customers this past year-Thank You!  I hope your Holiday Season is a happy one with your family and friends and may 2014 be prosperous to you and yours.  Merry Christmas & Happy New Year              


November update


     November is moving fast and everyone is scurrying around to get jobs done.  Beans have been a battle to get off with weather being terrible at times.  Growers switching bean heads to corn heads back to bean heads etc.

     What we have seen is that bean yields have been decent, not fantastic but decent.  Later planted beans have been lagging behind the early planted for sure.  Just shows that getting them in early pays, and yes it was not a easy spring to accomplish that.

     Well good news on the corn front, for the most part. Yields are good to very good - some over 200 bushels.  Again planting date is having an effect.  I took a plot off to the north that averaged around 180 bushels, planted on May 28th.  Not bad in my books.  Moistures, oh the moisture in my corn, now any of my growers that work close with me know that I have always been  unwilling to push CHU.  The last 2 years I have been beat down because of it, but this year pay back is a, well you know.  One grower planting 2650 and 2750 corn up to 2825 started out combining 24% corn bounced between 20-24% for most of it and even went under 20%. They dry all of it and dry has been between 4 to 5 tonnes dry, so what are they giving up… water?

     We have some great plots coming off that are making me smile for sure.  Lower heat unit corn is playing right along with the big long day boys and drier for sure.  We will know better when the mud settles (no dust these days) but hoping that our customers will be happy with the outcome.

     If you would like plots sent to you or updates on crop happenings, please email me and I will add you to my group.


October update


Thanks to everyone who attended our crop day.  As I mentioned at our meeting, I think our Farm Supply Group has a very competitive line-up and the resources to help make it work on your farm. As the plots are coming off, it is clear that the Ceresco beans have the yield to go along with their premiums. Based on my calculations from a plot with both the RR beans and Ceresco beans side-by-side, there was a $ 225 revenue advantage for the Ceresco beans. Your inputs will certainly be higher, but you would have to work awfully hard to spend an additional $ 225. If RR beans suit your program better, NK’s S10-G7 is a leading contender. Titanium’s from Maizex are also worthy of mention.

     On the Corn side, NK’s 29T has been juiced up with new trait technology that is sure to secure strong performance for the coming year. Maizex has some of the best silage varieties available for tonnage and in barn performance.  On the grain corn side, Maizex’s 2988 is the little 2650 that can swing with the big boys. With both NK and Maizex in our portfolio, we are confident we have a product that will be right for you. I am looking forward to getting the weigh wagon in to some corn fields soon.


White mold has been more prevalent this year in some bean fields. Also seeing some aphid yield loss in some hot spots in fields.  For the most part, yields have been fairly good & weather has been great to get them off.

     Corn has had more pressure. Maizex 8755 LFG has had some issues with corn bore & rootworm.  There seems to have been more pressure than normal.  We are finding that a number of dairy guys are planting corn silage on corn ground.  Tonnage has been great with one custom operator mentioning he had the best silage he has seen.  We have better standing silages, but you have to weigh agronomy vs feed value. Some of you got an early frost causing your corn to take longer to get to black layer. This will likely cause some bushel weight issues. With a $150 corn, moisture may be key to help making a profit this year.  How far do I push heat units ?? might be on growers mind when ordering corn seed this year.

     We now have pricing on our seed line-ups & we will be meeting with our growers to start taking orders for next year.  Remember it is OK to get your order started, get your corn off & then finalize your order.  This way you get what you want & we can make sure we can deliver it to you. 


There has been a lot of buzz in the air lately and it’s not just from the cluster flies that have become such a nuisance.  The buzz has been around growing IP Beans for which the big player locally is Ceresco.  A steady increase in demand from Asia, and to a lesser extent Europe for non-GMO beans as well as a relatively low supply for them globally has resulted in end users offering significant premiums.  A recent article in the October 1st edition of the Ontario Farmer highlights a lot of these points, including the premium range of $2.25 to $5.00/bu.  Shawn has done a great job in seeking out and bringing this opportunity to local producers.  I’m not sure who in the area will be happier that we’ve gotten the $5/bu premium - Shawn or the producers growing for Ceresco.  Of course, some of our competitors in the area don’t like this, and we’ve been hearing rumblings of our name and Ceresco’s name being dragged through the mud.  Our goal is to make our customers more profitable, and if we have to dodge some mud being thrown our way, then so be it.


September update

At writing time on Sept 12, we have just gone through 30o heat which has helped crops (especially corn) to finish off.

CORN - I have been in quite a few fields where nitrogen or lack of it is showing all over:  not sure if it was the wet start we got off to causing leaching or 5 weeks of dry heat, but nitrogen has run out in some spots.  I am also noticing that in the corn on corn, the trash is taking more nitrogen to break down the old corn stalks.  For the most part, yields are going to be good, but moisture may be on the high side. It will be interesting to see at harvest time.

     Silage chipper day went amazing again with 40 samples coming into us.  The moisture tests where as high as 79% but as low as 61%.  This was the first year we had a lot of Maizex silage corn and it looked very good. Thanks to everyone who brought stalks out and had a hamburger.

BEANS - S10-G7’s look terrific again this year.  Solid bean on those good dirt fields. We should be getting good results when they come off.  S15-B4’s also look solid as well as the Cobalts and the Titaniums.


WHEAT-For those of you out there with a strong stomach for the wheat season we just went through or with a steadfast commitment to having it in your rotation, wheat planting is fast approaching.  For soft red wheat, there are two main varieties of interest - Wave and R045.  Wave is a relatively new variety with some exciting yield indexes.  Its 5 year average was 105 and this year it posted an impressive 107.  It’s well suited for the middle to southern end of our area, but doesn’t do as well on some of the tougher soil types or if planted too late in the season.  R045 remains a real workhorse that continues to be a solid choice, especially if following a longer day bean.  As always, AC Morley is a great choice for those wanting to plant a hard red variety.  It’s one of the few varieties out there that has a moderate resistance rating for fusarium.


     The hot topic currently is our Ceresco line-up and IP premium.  Eiders, Havanes and Keas (new) are really making noise this year. I have never sold so many beans before harvest in my selling career.   Thanks to all my growers who have ordered for next year.  Special thanks to all that went on the bus trip to Ceresco on Sept. 5th.  Most had a good time seeing the operation, talking with other Ceresco growers and looking at IP soybean fields.


august update

Winter Wheat Seed

The season for planting wheat is quickly approaching. I know for some of you that Wheat is a four letter word! If farmers are one thing - they are resilient. Wheat will continue to go in the ground - but what to plant? "WAVE” is the new soft red wheat on the block. It is best planted on fertile ground in the southern portion of our region. In 2012 it had an impressive index of 112. It has very strong straw and a heavy test weight. For those of you in the more northern part of our region, R045 is an excellent soft red choice. In 2012, it had a higher yield index in area 2 than Emmit and Wave. For those of you that prefer Hard Reds, Morley is still standing tall. It provides lots of straw and continues to perform well year after year. As for bin run – be careful out there. The proper seed treatment will be a must this year! We should have prices in our hands by the time you are reading this newsletter.


july update

You have heard it said that on an average year we get this much rain. Is there such a thing as an average any more?

Last year—no rain. We would have paid for it. This year it won't stop until just recently. So what factors are causing it?


Let's start here and I can hear the moaning now. Fusarium, Septoria, Take All, Smidge - ok that's enough pain. Good growers using good spray programs and still having Fusarium and other diseases. Cold & wet turned into warm & wet, then turned into wet & humid made for too much pressure to keep wheat clean. I have been in fields that do the full spray program and missed a spot. Well they call it a miss - I call it a check. It definitely shows how bad it could be. Seasons like this are why I say farmers don't need to go to Casinos: we gamble everyday.

Solution—get in early. Paying for drying will out weigh the dockage if you get secondary disease in the fields. Keep the wind up in the combine and blow it out the back. Hopefully this gets you a better sample. (CFS will be looking for Feed Wheat—give us a call.)

Notes: - did you know that spraying a fungicide gets you 2 weeks of protection. Missing the ideal window by going too early reduces protection - fields sprayed at the start of flowering and the end of flowering have approx. the same amount of Fusarium (in fields I have checked) - pay attention to the variety, it can have an affect on resistance.

Aphids, hot topic number 2

Ok yes aphids are here but whoa the horse. Some have sprayed and maybe should have. But remember the rule 250 per plant and growing. Remember the beneficials are key as they will help clean up aphids. Jeff will say that Cruiser Maxx pays and I will have to admit he is right (since he is doing the editing!). This year it is showing up big time. Most Crusier fields have been clean, where some of non Crusier fields have been sprayed or have more aphid pressure at this time. Scout your fields—and not at a 40km/h drive by. If you want help, please contact me or any of the stores.


Took a while but corn is on the move now. For the most part clean fields with residual programs. Halex and Primextra + Callsito doing great jobs. Tassel time is around the corner, maybe an idea of spraying some corn fields with some fungicide. I know how much Ron likes to spray corn at this time, so we can get it done for you. Mark your highest production fields and these are the ones you should target. Average in Ontario is 8 to 11 bushels more over past 4 year trials. If interested talk to Ron or anyone of us.


june update

As we come to the middle of June, we realize again how weather can impact us as farmers. There are still beans to go in as well as a little corn. Trying to get dry hay off is almostimpossible without washing it a couple of times. I have been in many corn fields that are looking tough and so it goes on.

Grasses are maturing fast & furiously with Alfalfa just coming to bud. Guys have been able to wrap some hay, myself included. At first glance, quality & quantity look good. Forage supreme & grass seed had more acres put in them than I have seen in awhile. The seeding fields I have been in look very good. Volume should be there for sure.


et fields are causing some slow germination out there. Beans are struggling to get out of the ground. A lot of late beans have been planted this year. Here is hoping that we have a long fall. Beans are driven by daylight not always heat. They will need a good fall to finish them off. Bean price remains strong for crush beans. IP acres for Cerescohave had a very niceincrease this year. Fields for the most part look good, just got to remember to control dandelions in or before planting - tougher to get now.

What can you say but cross your fingers. On average, late planted corn & early planted corn are neck and neck around 4-6 leaf corn. If you have 8 or more leaves, you are lucky. Corn is starving for heat and is showing it as well. More chemical damage in spots with corn not having a chance yet to out grow it. Longer day corn may be a concern right now. The numbers show that we are equal on average on heat units; however, I don't think there was much in the ground in April so those don't count.Might be a good time when having your coffee to think about a fungicide for your corn at 6-8 leaf stage or tassel with the stress it has started out under. It might be good insurance, especially if going back in to spray your corn anyway.

I have seen many wheat fields with the fungicide spray on them and some that have not been sprayed. This year especially was a big difference. Disease was way more noticeable this year in most fields that I have checked. If you are pushing for wheat yield, fungicide application early and at heading for fusarium needs to be part of the program. Heading spray has been tricky, but is coming to a end. It took longer from just heading to flowering than normal because of the lack of heat, but this helped to leave a longer window to get the job done.


april update

Sunday morning and the sun is coming up finally (those of you who always harass me about sleeping) and we still have no power. Now my thoughts are turning to the eventual onset of spring. I know it came earlier last year, but we are half done April, went through an ice storm & there is still snow on ground in spots. Those that got nitrogen on your wheat early have to be smiling because it's wet out there now.

We have chemical prices & we still have a lot of available corn seed. Corn that you want to plant—not have to plant. We will be more than happy to help you out if you're seeing a lot of corn being substituted for other varieties. Some of our beans our sold out, but we have access to a couple of our good ones yet.

If you are looking to do a plot this year to have a look at NK or Maizex on your farm, let me or your rep know and we can help put some products together for you. Shawn



march update

I have read a lot of info lately about still more corn being planted across North America and in our area. I believe there is more corn on corn acres than I can remember. Planting corn on corn puts the cost per acre cost than in a rotation. Now I have heard Corn is King year after year after year. Growers, retailers, & the seed companies all say it. However have you taken the time to run your crop budgets? I have had the chance to review with a good grower of mine his crop revenue from 2012. Taking everything into account, fertilizer, sprays, seed, planting, harvesting etc… He rotated corn, beans and wheat. The #1 profit was Wheat, #2 Beans & # 3 was Corn. Now he will admit that this is not always the way, and I guess I bring this up to get you to think a little on your rotation and if corn on corn is the right way to go. Maybe yes, maybe no, but run the numbers.

A couple notes on the crop side. This year we did not do a chemical meeting but we will be getting out to see everyone personally to go over their cropping plans and to show the new products. We will be trying to do 2 meetings this year. One will be in the summer time to look at some in field agronomy and we will also have our harvest meeting that we always have in September. We will get more info to you closer to the date. If you would like a side by side trial or small plot trial please feel free to contact myself or your rep and we can set one up with you.

Seed grain - you can still catch the discount, so if you want to save money call any one of our stores or your sales rep now. You can read the rest of the newsletter after you call your order in (do I sound like a telemarketer!). Last call for NK or Maizex beans as well as IP Ceresco beans. They are going to be shipped and treated shortly, so if you are still thinking come on over to the side that makes you money. Corn Varieties—NK still is short supplied but our Maizex varieties are still in good shape great time to try some good varieties.

I had a chance to take a tour to the Maizex office and warehouse. The owner took a whole day to spend with us giving us a tour of their plant to their fields with dyke systems. Never had a chance to see up close how you get water off of flat ground. Talking with plant breeders and upper management at lunch was very interesting and informative. I tried to get Chadd fired, but they said every company needs one troubled employee, so they will keep him. (I wonder what or who is troubling him?) Good products, good support, and a Canadian company—can't beat that.


February update

With spring on the way it is time to get thinking about putting the crops in the ground. We are taking small grain orders now and there is a 3% early pay by March 1st. Great opportunity to get your grain booked and for a nice price as well. The farm supply group is always looking for small grains, so if you have some for sale, please contact us. We would be happy to price your commodity. Corn and bean acres are still to be totally finalized by growers and we still have good products available from both NK and Maizex.

Some may already know, but we can officially welcome Philip Dejong to the Farm Supply Group. Phil is going to look after the pig division but he will also have the honour of treating the first beans out of Campbellford. Jeff and Jen, with some persuasion from the crop guys, have purchased a seed treater. Phil will look after and treat all seed that comes through Campbellford. If you happen to get the wrong seed we can blame Phil for this year. On the serious side, we will have the ability to treat and inoculate all beans that are taken in totes or bulk. Phil is working on trying to get 2 sizes of totes as we are aware that we have customers that like the smaller totes to handle. All bag orders will be treated by the company that your seed comes from. We are hoping that this will give our customers the peace of mind that their treatment and inoculation will be good at the time of going in the ground.

Jeff at this time is pulling some chemical programs together and getting info on some new products that are coming out. Once completed, we will get this info out to you for a chance to compare your old program to a new program. With our IP customers doubling from last year, a good conventional spray program will make you money. Our round-up ready customers should be aware that a second mode of action with your roundup is a good idea to have a better kill and reduce the chance of resistant weeds.

CW Taylor /Torch/Double D's (Chadd Taylor) and he has a whole lot more nick names, invited me down to the Maizex offices and plant. The one thing that you learn quickly from these tours is it takes a lot of money to put the corn seed into a bag for you to put in the ground. Technology is definitely moving ahead in this area. It was very interesting to have explained the male female plants in a seed field and the work you have to do to make pollination work. Maizex and Chadd have an open invitation to customers wanting to tour the plant and are more than welcome to do so.


january update

With the nice weather it is time to think about forage & cereal seed needs.

Pre-ordering is your best option, so we can have what you want when you need it.


december update

Crops were really good or really bad. Variable is the word of the day. If you have crop still to sell, prices remain actively stronger. Yields through my weigh wagon where unfortunately as low as 70 Bu and as high as 238 Bu. The drought caused some stalk issues with corn cannibalizing itself and some corn going down. Even varieties that have never gone down were seen lying flat.

Then there was Sandy, who flattened our learner plot at Art Jeninga's. That made it real fun to take off. We have the data from our plots on fungicide. It is variable again. At Robert Glover's, quilt showed good response. Some hybrids as much as 20 Bu. At Art's, there was little response. Bill Vandorp's response for Quilt on 200 Bu corn was minimal, but on a little tougher ground to the north, Acapela did almost 10 Bu better on 170 Bu corn. Now this is just my own little thinking, but at Robert's, we used minimal fertilizer, so maybe in tougher ground or a program not using close to 200 N you may see a higher response. Just a thought.

This fall has been fun - wait did I say fun? As most know, NK seed supply was pulled back, and Jeff told us that Ken's orders were filled first (just kidding Ken). We took on Maizex as a new supplier with Chadd Taylor (or Mr T as Jake likes to call him) as our District Manager. There were growing pains as always, but for the most part I felt it has worked out very well. A special thanks to my growers who have enough trust in me not to steer them wrong (that have always grown NK) and moved over to Maizex. Two year plot data looks very good and has allowed us to move forward in the seed game.

Congratulations goes out to Justin Dorland for winning the Zone 1 Soybean challenge with a yield over 70 Bu (I think it was 73 but not sure) with the Maizex Titaniums. Of course they are sold out, so get your order in early for next year. On that note, anyone wanting to early pay who does not have their bill as they read this please, call your sales rep. I am sure they would be glad to take your money. Thanks to all the growers that do side by sides and plots in our market. It helps us big time, and it lets you have a look on your farm too. With Maizex on board, I am sure we will see a lot of side by sides and plots next year.


november update

Early order date is coming fast for the end of November. We have done a lot of plots and have info to share, how valuable not sure. Some areas taking off 200 BU corn some can't get 100. I guess that is why they say life is not fair. If you got rain you got some yield.

Do you sell Maizex? This is a question I get a lot lately, so I decided to answer it and it is yes. We have always thought we needed to be a 2 corn company to be able to provide solutions on your farm that works for you that not always one company can provide. We have tried other companies but they just didn't seem to be an all around fit. We were given the chance to jump-now or never-so here we are. If you get a chance the plot data may show you why we think Maizex will fit nicely in the Farm Supply Line up as well.

If you grow silage, have your sales consulant talk to you about Maizex Silage. Good place to look at the Maizex lineup.


october update

 I would like to thank everyone who attended our crop day back in September. We had a chance to see some conventional beans as well as some corn varieties. We had the growers pick the variety they thought was the best. The top yielder for soybeans ended up to be the OAC Wallace. We took the yields and converted them into dollars per acre using the Ceresco premiums. Havanes topped the plot for revenue per acre. If interested in seeing the data just contact anyone of our sales reps for premiums and pricing.

As for the rest of our bean lineup, we are having a good year with S10-G7s and S15-B4s at the top of most plots. The Mycogen 130s are still a strong choice as well. Special thanks to all our growers for doing the bean plots.

Cover crops are gaining some popularity, especially this year for dairy farmers that are short on hay. Some were averaging 2 bales per acre. The big benefit is that it will keep weeds down and put some organic matter back into the soil. A couple have tried the nitro radish whick looks good to me. If hay is not in your rotation, it helps get some deep tap roots down into your soil. I have seen some that are close to 2 feet tall that were not planted till the middle of August with not a lot of rain, as we all know.

Seed sales are upon us, and now is the time to secure your seed. Some varieties will sell out. Order early and get what you want. I have not taken any corn plots off yet, but 29T in fields that guys are taking off has been a stud. The competition has done a lot of talking about this variety and provided some false information. The fact is it is rated at 2825 CHU with a 92 day maturity. When it starts to dry down it drops moisture fast. It will cannibalize itself to make yield and will have the tops break off. It doesn't look the greatest at combine time, and doesn't combine the best year in and year out, but it is there in yield to be sure. Now it comes with refuge in a bag.


september update

We have been in quite a few BMR fields and we have been very impressed with how it has withstood the drought and yielded right up there with the other silage corns. This has been the primary objection we have encountered regarding the product and that issue has been clearly resolved on the Mycogen product! So agronomics is not the issue. The best stalks at chipper day were BMR. The real question is, can I use it on my farm and can the person who does my ration be able to utilize it properly? We have heard in the past that BMR feels softer, heavier in my bucket and I am feeding less corn (at $320/tonne). The real question is, can it make me money? The answer is clearly yes, with the qualifier being the ability to properly balance it in the feed program. So now that silage is off, be thinking about next year and whether I want to use BMR in my ration. The only challenge for this year is going to be SUPPLY OF SEED! The popularity of the product in the rest of the province and the drought in the seed production area has greatly impacted seed availability for BMR. If you want it– please order it soon.

We are seeing high levels of toxin all over our area and at these levels it can have a huge impact on your bottom line. If you need it tested, call your consultant or one of our stores.


august update

As we roll through August it really is hard to comment on crops. Sporadic would be a word that comes to mind. Rainfall has been hard to come by, but some spots have had the luxury of more than others. This year has confirmed again that early planting pays. Early planted corn sent roots down fairly good before we got rain in latter May. This has allowed crops to survive the drought periods that we have seen.

Spider Mites have caught everyone's attention. We have to remember that they can be hard to detect and if you can see them without a Magnifying glass you have great eyes. The biggest problem is to determine the threshold of them to determine to spray or not. There also is some potash deficiency in some fields that at first look might resemble spider mites. Hopefully some rainfall will help the beans out the most.

Hay is becoming a tough commodity to have enough of. A lot of growers have put grain back on their wheat fields to hopefully get a little extra forage. It also is a great way to put organic matter back into your land. This year it becomes a win—win situation.

I have had a few discussions with some customers on hay and the price, so the rest of this paragraph is just my opinion. Some people are thinking (or already have) of selling off their livestock. Here are some thoughts: If you are selling with no intention of getting back in again and just going to sell hay fine. If you are jumping back in at some time, be careful, here is why. At this time, bred cows are bringing $800. Four months ago they were $1800. With the amount of cows going through sales this price will return again. Sheep are no different. Prices right now are the lowest they have been in years. The market is flooded at this point causing prices to go down. Hay prices are strong now but we know the wheel, at some time hay will be abundant, hay prices will be lower which will make livestock go higher. Now if you have to buy $80 hay to get you through, it will not work and selling a few would make sense until you have the numbers for your hay. Also remember that if you like your genetics in your flock or herd now, they won't be the same when you get back in. All I am saying is weigh your options first, you would be surprised what you can find. I know where there is a bag of silage that could be bought right now that I just came across.

Our Crop Meeting is coming up in September. It is a great opportunity to see some new products, also some great growing information on plant populations as well as fungicides. We are looking for some great data this year on our fungicide trials that we have. We will also have info on the western bean cutworm that is becoming more prevalent. I hope to see everyone at the breakfast.

A little humour you may have heard-A county highway inspector stops at a farm & says to the farmer, "we are working on a new road so I need to look around your farm”. The farmer replies, "well if you have to, but stay out of that field”. The inspector pulls out a card & says "see this card Sir, this means I can go where I need to go”. The farmer goes back to his chores & a while later he hears some yelling, looks out & sees his bull right on the heels of the inspector. The inspector is yelling for the farmer to help him. The farmer reply's "hey, show the bull that card tell him you can go anywhere you want”.


july update

With the US being as dry in the Corn Belt as 1988, it has pushed corn prices up, with beans and wheat in the vapor trail. I have heard some producers have booked part of their crop for 2013. That might not be a bad idea. Here in our area, conditions have been great up to now. I am sure that corn will be tasseled by the time you get this and beans will have started flowering. We are on the edge of being dry and looking at the forecast for a lack of rain we need to hope the canopy can hold that moisture for us. How good has it been? Remember that old saying "corn knee high first of July”? We have a new saying, "head high by the first of July”. Quite a few producers have sprayed some quilt on some corn at different stages. It will be an interesting year to work the weigh wagon.

While you are out combining your wheat, ask yourself if you did everything you could to get out of it what you should. I think yields will be good, but I have been in some fields that had disease pressure and showed signs of it that could have been better with that fungicide spray.

Forages may have some producers seeing shortages. You need to be working on this problem now. Eastern Ontario seems to have good quantity if you can find the right seller. Broadcasting oats or small grains after wheat might give you a chance to harvest some green chop this fall. Have a safe summer!


june update

Well, it has been the best of springs and the worst of springs. Let's start with the best-we had a great planting window that helped get crops into the ground early. Crops emerged quickly. Actually, there is more to talk on the bad side of things, so we will move on from there (Obviously Shawn's glass is half empty!).

I have been in some RR bean fields that used Guardian instead of just glyphosate. For the most part, these beans are staying really clean which should impact positively on yield. With all the rain in the first part of June, weed flushes will be coming every 2 weeks.

The long streak of dry weather has stopped residual chemicals from working in some areas and by the time of the rain the weeds were too big to take down. No one product can say it has worked better than another.

Fungicide is still a tough window to hit for wheat growers. The proper time is crucial for Fusarium control. That being said, wheat looks good and looks like it will be early this year for sure. Taking a pole, but I think a combine will be in a field buy July 8th to 10th. Erin has some info on a program from NK on planting beans after wheat in this newsletter. Might be something to play with on a few acres?

Army worms, aphids, cut worms: we may see it all this year. Army worms have been found in a couple spots as well as cutworms. Keep your eye on your fields. It could be one of those years.

How can wheat look so good and alfalfa be so bad this spring? It will be interesting to see if the stunted alfalfa will come back. The second cut will tell us.

Using a liquid starter is a good thing. Putting 3 to 4 lbs on is a good thing (unless it is your waist!). Putting on 6 lbs may just be a bit of overkill. I have had the chance to get in a couple fields where rows have got plugged on starter. It truly shows the benefit.

I would like to give a special thanks to Art Jeninga and Robert Glover for working with us on our Learning Plots. In our plots, we are going to have a Quilt trial on all of the varieties, as well as a population test on 29T and 21J. These plots also have the newest products that will come up for commercial sale. Art's plot has RR beans and Robert's has conventional beans. Both plots will be signed so growers are more than welcome to stop into these plots. Robert's is just North west of Maizing Acres elevator and Art's is just off Hwy 2 on Carruther's Road, west of Grafton,

Hay samples-contact us to get your hay sampled. It is a good time to find out the quality of your hay. Grasses matured very rapidly this year, so if you are reading this and have not started to cut get moving.

If you need someone to look at some crops or anything else please call us.



Have You Thought about Double Cropping?

With such an early start to the spring, winter wheat broke dormancy early and has headed 7 to 10 days ahead of schedule according to Peter Johnston of OMAFRA. NK has come out with a grower program for those who have early wheat and would be in position to plant a crop following harvest. As growers strive to maximize acres output and economic gain, this is an opportunity worth looking at. Cruiser treated beans are 50% OFF for a seed cost of $48.35/ acre, and untreated seed is 33% OFF for a seed cost of $52.75/ acre. Beans planted July 1st to 10th have a 90% success rate, July 10-15th a 50% success rate, and planting from July 15th- 20th the risk of not harvesting increases but there is still a gain for 75 lb/ac of Nitrogen and the addition of organic matter returned to the soil on top of that. Talk to one of our team members for more details on whether this will work for you. Get your seed ordered before it is gone.  



april update

 OHHH how I want to plant corn!!! Let's just remember if you have to replant you will lose MONEY.

I just talked with a good customer, and we talked about how hard it is to replant corn. Making sure you are on the rows to prevent fertilizer burn. By the time you are reading this your planter should be ready and full of seed. Greg Stewart says the last week of April - I am good with that he is the corn guy.

We have lots of seed if needed -beans & corn. If we can help, let us know. Plots, Plots Plot. We love plots. If you would like help in doing a plot let us know. We would be glad to help. There are some new varieties that would look good on your farm.


february update

On the seed side, getting off to a good start is an important step. The timing of planting is critical and has been moving earlier into the spring into cooler and wetter ground conditions. It is also starting to show that a crop that is faster out of the ground generally has higher yields at harvest. A starter is a great way to help this happen by feeding the new plant until a good root structure can be built up. With the price of commodities, maybe now is a good time to invest in a liquid starter kit for your planter. If you are thinking of looking at options, we can help. We also have data if you are wanting to see the difference starter can have on your fertilizer program.
















january update

 Some highlights from the Southwest Ag Conference

- Ohio avg. Corn yield was 169.9 Bushels

- Record for beans is 429 BU (no was not on a 100 acres)

- Top yield in US was 93.3 Bushels (pretty sure it was a NK variety but not positive.)

- Provincial avg. 2011-45 Bushels,   2010-46 bushels

- The Market outlook session?good advice there - SELL HIGH BUY LOW.

- Add 200 heat units to your beans that you usually plant on your farm. Take advantage of more yield.

- Cover Crops Make Money



november update

Beans for the most part are off, with good yields in the books. As corn plots come there seems to be no variety taking the lead. One thing I believe is that growers need to be paying attention to Relative Maturity. Seems CHU is becoming more variable than ever before. There is some 2850 corn that has the same Relative Maturity as a 2900. The maturity number is becoming a better gauge on flowering time as well as dry down time.

A long time ago I heard from a longtime grower that leap years are ones to be careful of. Be careful not to push maturity too far. Next year may just not be the year that you can get away with it.


october update

I am writing this from North Carolina while being able to feed my redneck passion for Nascar.  Driving down, I thought only north of 7 had rock, boy was I wrong.  If you have never driven down I79, it is worth the trip.  It also has a couple of other passions of mine - corn fields and black cattle in the valley, on the hills, and everywhere.  I did see one Charolais herd for you white cattle boys, but odds on Blacks.  What I did notice about the corn was not what I would call a great crop - small cobs and stalks.  Made me think that in our area we could be worse for sure, but we all know that.
On that note it is that time of year
when our corn and bean seed pricing arrives and I think it looks better than I expected. Some increase, but overall, very little. This means that our team will be out to help you place the best products on your farm.  We have a good number of corn trials as well as bean side by sides.  So lets get orders in early to get you the seed you need as by all reports we are hearing, seed supply is going to be tight this year for the top products.   


September update

August and September have been very busy months for us at the Farm Supply. We have been to meetings, tours and training to develop better knowledge on products and services we provide to help you succeed.

   Mycogen provided us a great opportunity to go to Indianapolis in August to tour the Dow AG Science facility and see where there company is going.   Jen and Jeff went as well for what was to be the start of their 25th Wedding Anniversary.  I acted as a chaperone for the start of the trip.   So?  picture flying into Chicago for a transfer flight in a thunderstorm - airport gets a lightning strike and our flight to Indy gets cancelled. So, no flight, have to drive 3 ½ hrs - end up riding in a stretch Hummer. If you never have rode in a Hummer you are not missing much. 25 minutes is lots. The 3 ½ hours of course turns into 4 and when you have beer and some young guys?you need to stop a lot.  Throw in the fact that they lost Jeff and Jen?s Luggage and we are off to a great start.  Now I will have to say, Jeff was taking it better than I thought, now Jen, well, hyper as usual. Things got better (we sent Shawn home) and they ended up finishing off a nice trip to the west coast.

   Jeff and I travelled to the Syngenta One Launch the first part of September. We learned about the new products coming down the pipe from Syngenta.  On a side note, Jeff?s truck broke a fuel line and by the time we got there we had diesel everywhere.  Jen thinks I should travel without Jeff, so after I am done writing this, I am heading to a Purina meeting by myself.

   Ok these 2 things bring me to our crop meeting on Thursday, September 22nd.  For our crop customers  it would be very beneficial to make the meeting as there is a fair bit on new stuff to talk about for this fall.  This year it will be very important to look at your orders early as the seed crop in the US has been damaged for almost all the seed companies and good varieties will be in tight supply.  Hope to see you for breakfast.

   Customer Appreciation will be from Sept 26th  to Oct 1st . A flyer accompanies this newsletter with specials in stores.  The one I would like to bring up is Alfalfa orders with 25 cents off the price before any discounts.  This gives a customer a great chance to try our top of the line Mycogen Hybrid 4S417.  This looks to be a great fine stemmed Alfalfa with great re-growth.  We also have other choices. Geseco alfalfa is made up of 2 top varieties blended together at a very nice price.  We have customers with very good results growing this product.


august update

I will start this crop section by touching on BMR Corn. I know it's for the dairy guys and down the road maybe beef, but it is a corn silage that has been challenged by its ability to yield. Yield has been a big discussion over the last 2 years, and after this year, even Jake is breathing easier. Everybody agrees it has been a very dry July that could have easily had an impact on silage yield. We have BMR in plots and in side by sides in a number of farmers fields. I would have to say some of the tallest corn is the BMR. The yield loss in the new varieties is now down to under 5 %. Now that we have confidence that BMR will yield, talk to Jake or Erin on what it can do for your cows. That's were the money will be made!

We have our alfalfa prices out now on the new hybrid alfalfa 4S417 as well as the rest of our strong line up. Be sure to pay attention to the performance on this new variety from mycogen Seeds.

Beans seem to be running into trouble this year, showing what we think may be fertilizer deficiencies. Many beans are showing some yellowing of leaves and some minor curling. We have sent some tissue samples of a couple of fields for verification. Overall the beans and corn look very good thanks to mother nature giving us the timely rains.

Wheat fields are still coming off, with 2 ton close to the average yield. Planting will not be far away and we can provide you with all the top varieties in our area. We will be coming around with prices in the upcoming weeks.

Pest update - So far the rains have kept aphids at bay with little pressure out there. The same can be said about spider mites. This is the good news, now for the bad. In western Ontario, Western Bean Cutworm traps are full. They are catching so many, the traps are spilling over. But we are here in the east you say? Last year I had a trap at the Laver Farm, this year at the Glover farm. No more than 2 miles apart by the crow or moth flies. The number at this time is 5x as high as last year. I have another trap at the Dejong Family Farm in Grafton and it is 7x more than last year. Whew, I am glad NK has that new gene called Vipterra. We will have more info on these issues later next month

july update

Wheat looks as good in our area as anywhere I have been.  In western Ontario, they are looking at 60-65 bushel wheat.  I am hoping for more here, but we will see.

Wheat should be rolling shortly.  This will be good, what will not be good is the chance for spider mites to get in your bean fields.  Aphids have already been found in some areas and if you add spider mites, this could mean trouble.  With it as dry as it is, beans do not need any more  pressure.  Spider mites can only be seen well with a magnifying glass.  They can start on the outside of your field, where aphids can start anywhere in the field.

ALFALFA : The seed selling season is upon us again, and this year we have the top performing hybrid alfalfa from Mycogen 4S417. Early buy programs are now in effect, and if you are interested in more detail, please give one of our sales reps or one of our stores a call for more information.

may update
Well we knew 2011 had no way of being like 2010, and surely the delayed spring has caused some frustration.  A good week of weather has helped in getting some seed into the ground.  We have still been able to find seed for growers as we get deeper into spring.  If you need any seed feel free to contact any one of our locations.

   We have been able to get some plots in the ground and a special thanks to our growers allowing us to get a look at some new products, like Smart-Stax with Mycogen and our new Viptera corn on the NK side.  If any growers would like to do a plot or a side by side especially on the bean side with the new Roundup Ready Genuity varieties, please feel free to contact Jake or myself and we would be glad to help.  There are a lot of new beans to look at.

   Chemical questions or products?we have the knowledge and the service to meet all your needs. Planting Round up corn, remember you can use a conventional spray program or use a residual along with your glyphosate to give yourself a cleaner field.

   It is coming close to hay time, I know, sooner than we want.  We feel that our twine and net wrap prices are very strong for our customers.  If you would like a quote contact any of our locations or sales people.  Better yet, just come on in and visit our store staff.

april update 

We now have our chemical pricing and there are some really good programs that have come down in price.  If you are looking for chemical pricing or to have your crops sprayed please contact us, we can help you with all your needs.

We still have quality grain, corn and soybean seed left if you have found some more acres.  Anyone interested in doing a corn or soybean plot please let us know.  They are very useful and can give you a chance to see some different varieties on your farm.

   Madoc Farm Supply is now a dealer of D-Dell corn. This gives our customers a chance if they wish to grow non-traited corn at a good price. D-Dell corn can be ordered form any of our 3 locations.

   Get your planters ready, spring is here.

march update
  I had the chance to hear a retired Professor, Don Huber, from Perdue University that got me thinking, so I would like to see if it gets you thinking too?glysophate and the concerns of using it.  Now you mention Dr Huber to some people and they get really defensive in this matter.  His topic was the over use of glyphosate in the last 5 to 10 years.  So I figure he is going to talk about residual weeds that are creeping up more and more?.Nope!  His topic went further than that. It was based around what glyphosate was also affecting.  His claim, and had data to follow it up, was that it is starting to tie up nutrients in the soil like Manganese, Zinc, and Iron.  He was finding if you used it in a rotation every 3 years or so you were fine.  It was every year that the buildup started and that is where the trouble begins.  How many of us can say that we sprayed 1 L on a Dandelion then went to 11/2 L and what the heck, hit it with 2 L.  This is what causes the buildup in our soil and starts the binding of nutrients.

   Hold on there is more.  If you grow crops for livestock and have toxin problems there could be a link there too.  He had studies on dairy farms and they  had issues and made the switch away from glyphosate and things have started to improve.  There are even toxins out there now that feed labs cannot detect.  

    Dr Huber went on to say that there could be other factors causing this as well, but it is starting to look like this problem may not be going away anytime soon.

   Dr Huber went on into the food chain and the problems there but maybe we will wait for more info on that.

   His take home message was Glyphosate is a great tool that is best to be used wisely and not to be over used.

   Now is Dr Huber right or wrong?  It is hard to say, but like I said at the top of this article, it should have you thinking on your farm


Oscar vs Sherwood Oats
2010 Yield Index 101 vs 75
Bushel Weight 40.1 vs 35.6  

Yield Specific MIXED GRAIN Blends
50/50 65/35 Blends Available
Oat/Barley/Pea Forage Mix
General Seed?s GESECO Blend Alfalfa
Mapleseed?s Team Brand Alfalfa
Horse Paddock Mixes
Low Ground Hay Mixes
TREASURE Timothy? Ontario?s #1


january update
As we go in to January and we freeze our (you pick what body part) off, what a great time to be a cash crop farmer.  Prices high, booking contracts good, and when it is cold outside you can just put your feet up and stay warm. With the USDA report just out things seem to look good for the next little while.

WHEAT -  Exports out of the US for wheat have never been higher as prices are showing. There is a lot more wheat in the ground this year as compared to last year. World demand should stay strong with shortages in other countries.

CORN - Yield in the US was down last year on average 1.5 bushel per acre.  Adding to this, in December, was a record for corn used for ethanol.  US stocks have dropped by 2/3, which should make corn prices strong for awhile.

   Last year, Washington State  had the highest average corn yield at 205 bushels, followed by California at 195. The average for the US was 153.9.  Of course Iowa planted the most acres.

SOYBEANS - Soybean production in the US is down by 46 million bushels from last year.  Average yield last year was 43.5 bushels per acre. Last year was 44.  Global Soybean production is predicted to be down by 2.3 million tonnes. Global Soybean stocks are down 2 million tonnes to 68.3 million.  This would suggest that the day after the report all commodities have rose sharply with some reaching highs not seen in a while.  The next little while may be a great time to book some commodities for the future, maybe even for 2012.  Roll the dice!

December Update

 On the crop side, what a year!   2010 was a great year to grow crops in our area.  We even had Ohio weather for heat.  Corn and beans yielded very well and shows on the Tonnes for Ontario already harvested for this year.  We are very Lucky to have the best yielding corn Hybrid out there in 29T with it topping out in our VanDorp plot at 247 BU.  It won almost all plots this year. Along with our 33R, 27B, 23K, 21J and 23F we can cover your corn needs.


    We now have one of the top Roundup Ready soybeans on the trials. Be sure to talk us for a chance to get them on your farm.  It looks like a winner.

    We now have a financing program with FCC that can help you with your seed, chemical, and fertilizer requirements for next year.  We can show the program to you and help set it up if interested

November UpdateEarly order and pay discounts are still available.  Mycogen early pay discount of 8% is available until November 30.  NK early order discount of 5% and early pay discount of 8% is available until December 31.  For more information please call Shawn at 705-768-2945. 

october update 


Well you think that this year could not get any better and commodities rose at harvest time. Mark this year in your books, so you can talk about it years from now, as that great growing year.

Bean plots that we have seen coming off are between 50 to 60 bushels. Bushel weight at 58 to 61 as well. O9-Y2 having been doing well in some plots as well as are RR 1 beans like 08-C3 and 04-Z9

    Have been able to take a couple corn plots off so far with 23k as high as 209 bushels. We will get more information as we go forward but as everyone know corn yields will be great. If you have side by sides or just wanted to weigh a variety for a sample, please feel free to call me and we would be more than happy to help. The biggest problem seems to be trying to get High Moisture corn before it becomes low moisture. If you have not taken your high Moisture off better get to it.

    A quick note that NK and Mycogen early order is coming up the middle of November. Our sales staff will be around to help you make good decisions for next year?s growing season.

     Dairy farmers have always had a difficult task every season picking corn silage varieties.  It is not getting any easier!!  Not only do you need to pick a variety, but now we have a large assortment of traits to choose from, always having cost in mind and what works for you in your system.

    My thoughts on Corn silage are (here we go) for dairy producer is to give what the cow needs and wants to maximize your profits!

    I would pick a variety in this order (a) Net Energy Lactation Value-the higher the better?more energy in the silage so we do not need to feed as much dry or HMC.     (b)NDF Digestibility-the higher the better?the cows simply eat more forage (cheapest feed on farm) so we can decrease grain feeding and have a healthy and happy rumen.(c)Yield-Remember ?feed what the cow wants and needs.  High yielding varieties generally have a lower Net Energy Value (not what cow the wants or needs)(d)Traits?Now you pick the traits you need and prefer!!!

    Every Seed Company works very hard to breed new traits and varieties for the farmer.  My favourite Corn Silage varieties are?(here we go again)   NK Line-up (a)  N27B?top notch NEL with high NDF Digestibility and yield.  Available with all traits if needed.  (b)N29A?Good quality feed with high end yield, good value for your dollar!!

    Mycogen Line-up?With 1 year under our belt, we are very impressed with the very high NDF Digestibility, NEL and yield with BMR.  Years ago BMR was knocked for the yield drag that it carried. Mycogen has worked very long and hard to decrease yield drag to 10% now?field plots in this area have proven that.

    I have several rations using BMR and found that we can reduce feeding HMC or Dry Corn by 2 kg/cow/day and increase production with it.  An average 50 cow herd using BMR can save $7300/yr?The Ultimate Corn Silage!!!  With two Seed Companies, we have something for everyone.

September Update      Beans are starting to come off with initial yields looking very good.  Weeds in some fields are having some affect on the beans.  Pre-harvest burn down is one way of improving combining through those dirty fields while cleaning up the bean samples. 

 Corn silage should be finishing up with  very good yields as well as quality.  We are finishing up some of our plots that will give us a good comparison on BMR compared to other varieties.  Dairy producers need to monitor their High Moisture corn as the moisture is quickly falling on corn.




       With Beans coming off early it will allow wheat to get in the ground early.  If you are planting early, it might be beneficial to use Crusier.  You will end up with a little more insect and disease pressure planting early; however, early planting will certainly help yield.

  Just a reminder of our breakfast meeting coming up on the 23rd. I think there will be some good take home information to help in your cropping decisions for next year.

August Update

   All bean fields are looking very good this year with higher than average yields expected. Height of beans could be a concern as the pods go right to the top of the plant. Lodging and stand ability could become a factor before we get them in the bin. If you have never baled bean straw this would be the year to give it a try. It sure is easier on the baler than corn stalks.

   Volunteer corn is more prominent this year than others. This could be a factor if you are growing edible beans. Growers may need to start walking fields and having a look to see if there is a cob forming.  You may have to hand pick to keep the corn out of your bean bin.

   Corn has started to dent already and is close to 2 weeks ahead of schedule. Corn silage for the most part is on the same path. Another noticeable fact is that some varieties are pushing out of the husk. This can cause a problem with bird damage and also open the door to toxins.  Take a walk in some of your fields. You may not enjoy it more than this year.

   I was wondering about whether a  corn stalk could be too tall. We always love our big tall green plants, but why? Unless it is corn silage, are we just not after that big cob of corn? Is that not what we get paid for? The bigger the stalk the more trash I have to fight in my bean fields or even worse corn on corn. Maybe it is time to think about the stalk a little more - just think smaller.

July Update

   Here that your corn is growing again. What a year for corn. Tassling quick, way over my head? ok that is not saying much but it is high and dark green. Quilt is still an available option to take advantage to boost your yield, however it needs to be sprayed as soon as possible.

   Small grains are continuing to be confusing on fungicide impact on them. It is looking that the oats and barley are starting to see signs of rust and smut coming into them. A fungicide would have helped for sure keep your fields cleaner. Wheat at the time of heading was fairly dry but since that time rain and humidity as taken over and fusarium with this weather would seem to be on the way.  A good choice would be to get your wheat off as quick as you can. At time of printing there where combines in some fields in our area.

   Wheat fields that have been thinner this year are showing more weeds. We are having some growers who are doing a pre-harvest burn down to remove them from thrashing. Spray today and combine 10 days later (approx)

June Update

   As we head to the middle of June, hay fields are maturing rapidly. With the rain finally getting here, the second cut should start coming along nicely. Those of you like me that still have hay still standing cannot wait until July to cut this year. Fields are probably 10 days earlier in maturing. By July you will be cutting mini trees.( are you beef guys reading this.)

  Now that planting and spraying season is finishing up, how about a review.  Roundup ready corn means that you can obviously spray Round up on it but does not mean that you have to. Why would you buy Roundup corn then? 2 reasons  - 1/ You will probably not have a choice, the seed companies are all leaning towards RR Corn in the future.  2/ For weed escapes when your corn is up. What better product to get broadleaves and grasses in one pass.

   Another thing I am starting to see is people with Round Up corn are waiting for weeds to show up before they spray, even when they are putting a residual down with it. You are losing yield right at the start. There have been enough studies to suggest that keeping your fields clean up to 8 leaf corn will have a large impact on your yield. Just because Converge XT says you can spray up to 3 leafs does not mean you should.  Converge and Marksman have worked very well as a residual.  As far as the conventional program, Primextra / Callisto is still showing why it is the Cadillac program. Higher price better rewards.

   Dry weather has also played havoc in the conventional bean spraying. We are seeing all products having to be re-sprayed. Conquest and Boundary-Guardian have both had escapes this year. No rain- no activation, it is as simple as that. I have even seen some sencor damage from the Bounday- Guardian fields and they still are not clean.

  Wheat, what can you say? Some farmers missed the window of spraying. because of how fast the wheat was maturing. I would say well over 80% of all wheat is headed out. Straw is for the most part just not there, very short and uneven. If your fields are not like this than you are in the upper 10% - either good management or good luck but take it either way.

   Quote of the Month  -    "You can always brag about how great your crops are, if you don?t have any fields along the road!"