Sep 5, 2014 by Lee Hart

Great developments on the grain and forage crop front

There are some great things happening out there with crops and crop protection products these days. And here’s a sampling.

Dow AgroSciences is bringing three products to the market place this fall that are far more than just “new and improved”

This may not be the best corn crop in Western Canada, but it appears to be pretty darn good. Cattleman's Corner Columnist Peter Vitti is holding a stalk of Pioneer P7443R corn that stands about 11 feet tall. Vitti says there was about 500 acres of the variety in a very uniform stand near Unity Saskatchewan. It will be cut for dairy silage. He says the crop was grown on sandy loam soil, it had timely rains and good heat units. Most of the crop had two cobs per stalk.

This may not be the best corn crop in Western Canada, but it appears to be pretty darn good. Cattleman’s Corner Columnist Peter Vitti is holding a stalk of Pioneer P7443R corn that stands about 11 feet tall. Vitti says there was about 500 acres of the variety in a very uniform stand near Unity Saskatchewan. It will be cut for dairy silage. He says the crop was grown on sandy loam soil, it had timely rains and good heat units. Most of the crop had two cobs per stalk.

herbicides, you can find more details on these in an upcoming issue of Grainews.

The first hot product is a nitrogen stabilizer that works with anhydrous ammonia as well as liquid UAN, although that is probably less common as a nitrogen source.

The stabilizer that works with anhydrous ammonia is called N-Serve. It is injected into the soil at the same type as the anhydrous is applied and it prevents or slows soil bacteria from converting the ammonium to the nitrite form and then ultimately the nitrate form where it can be most easily lost to the environment. A similar product that works in a similar way — enTrench— with liquid nitrogen.

So that is interesting.

DAS is also coming out with genetic traits that can make corn and soybean crops resistant to both gylphosate and 2,4-D. Once plant breeders get the traits moved into a variety farmers can then apply a DAS herbicide called Enlist Duo which delivers the two herbicides and a one/two punch against a wider range of weeds.  The trait will be found in DAS’ own Hyland seed varieties and the trait has also been licensed to Dupont Pioneer and Monsanto for soybean and corn varieties respectively.

And if that isn’t enough Dow Agrosciences is also coming out in 2015 with two new herbicides for wheat and barley that features a new active ingredient.

The Group 4 Arylex active ingredient will be found in Paradigm and Pixxaro herbicides. The new herbicides will be easy to tank mix, there is a much wider window of application in terms of crop staging and weather conditions, much less chemical odor, easy clean out, faster acting, longer lasting, a useful tool in terms of herbicide rotation and reducing herbicide resistance…it has a lot going for it. So watch for that in 2015.

BRING ON THE FORAGE BRASSICA

Southern Alberta rancher, Graeme Finn who is also a keen member of the Foothills Forage Association got the ball rolling last year with a 10 acre test plot of a forage brassica, also sometimes referred to as kale or rape, that appears to produce an excellent annual forage crop.

Alberta farmer Doug Wray wanted it made clear he is kneeling and NOT standing in this 80 acre field of oats and forage brassica (kale) which he will cut and then swath grazing this winter.

Alberta farmer Doug Wray wanted it made clear he is kneeling and NOT standing in this 80 acre field of oats and forage brassica (kale) which he will cut and then swath grazing this winter.

Well several more farmers in parts of Alberta, along with Finn, are trying the forage brassica for a range of grazing options this year. Finn, himself seeded 150 acres of the forage brassica, mixed with oats and barley. He’ll be swathing in early September and then using it as winter swath grazing for dry cows this winter.

At another farm, north of Calgary, Wynn Chisholm of WA Ranches is redeveloping some old timothy hay fields so as those are “renewed” cow/calf pairs this summer are grazing about 150 acres of annual pasture made up of the similar forage brassica, oats and barley blend.

And east of Calgary, near Irricana rancher Doug Wray has seeded an 80-acre trial of the forage brassica (kale) barley and oats to be used for swath grazing this winter. He’s hoping the higher protein brassica will improve the weight gain on backgrounding calves. “Even if it is only one-quarter pound more per day that is about 50 pounds more over the winter,” says Wray.

In central Alberta, one producer has included the forage brassica in an annual pasture blend for sheep, and there are also some trials using forage brassica near Lethbridge.

So there seems to be lots of interest in seeing if this forage brassica with up to 19 per cent protein has a fit as summer annual pasture or for swath grazing.

Lee Hart is a field editor for Grainews in Calgary, Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lee Hart

Lee Hart


Lee Hart is a long-time farm writer, and honorary member of the Alberta Institute of Agrologists, with many observations on the agriculture industry, who never hesitates to admit he is wrong (should that ever happen.)


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