Quick hitters

—Light frosts likely won’t cause significant damage to emerged canola — yes, there is some emerged canola here and there. Growers with emerged crop should monitor fields a few days after any frost to ensure the crop has avoided significant mortality. For more on frost damage assessment, click here. (Derwyn Hammond)
—Keep a 2-cup sample of all seed lots sown. Store seed samples with their seed tags in Ziploc or seed lab bags, then put those bags in a rodent-proof container in a cool dry place. Also capture and keep samples as seed comes out of the seed boot to show what damage, if any, the drill is doing. A tube sock or cloth bag taped over the hose end is a good way to take these samples. Growers will want these samples if they discover a problem with emergence. (Doug Moisey)
—Broadcasting and “mudding in” canola are not recommended. These extreme seeding techniques typically require a higher seeding rate and result in patchy emergence. At this stage of the season, patience is key (Doug Moisey)
—Growers can protect their seed investment by seeding right the first time. If growers have to reseed, note they probably won’t get the same hybrid the second time. Many seed companies are sold out of their top seed. (Doug Moisey)
—Suspected redbacked cutworms have been reported near Carrot River, Saskatchewan. They were found in fields that were in alfalfa as of last fall. Scout fields for cutworms before doing a pre-seed burnoff. If populations are high, work the field to get rid of green growth and starve them. Or take note of their presence and plan for corrective action later. (Jim Bessel)
—Wireworms have become more active in southern Alberta. A handful of fields have reported high numbers. The best way to minimize the wireworm threat in canola is to make sure crop establishes quickly and with high plant populations. To take part in a wireworm ID survey,click here and read the bottom paragraphs. (Troy Prosofsky)
—Spring combining of last fall’s crop has nearly wrapped up in the western part of the Alberta Peace.  As expected, most is grading No.2 or No.3 with some down at sample. In general, spring-combined canola has high free-fatty acids, which degrade the oil, and has wildlife residue that customers don’t want. We heard that at least one crop came off at 35 bu./ac. and No.1 grade, so shop spring-combined canola around to find the best grade possible. Elevators are taking the higher-grade stuff, with the rest going as feed or to crushers.  (Erin Brock)
—We’ve had lots of calls about cleavers, including suspected cases of group-2 resistant cleavers in Saskatchewan. Getting good control of large cleavers (beyond the 2- to 4-whorl stage) can be a challenge with some in-crop herbicides, so consider a pre-seed burnoff. Consult your provincial guide to crop protection for specifics on weed size and spray rates. For your guide, click your province: AlbertaSaskatchewan Manitoba (Derwyn Hammond)
—We’re getting scattered reports of flea beetle feeding on volunteer canola. A return to warm weather will make them active again, so growers should keep an eye on any emerged canola for surface pitting or shot holes. (Derwyn Hammond)
—Soil temperatures dropped from late April highs, but temperatures will warm up in the coming weeks. At this stage of the season, don’t hold off on seeding because of seeding temperatures. If soil conditions are good to go, then go. As for growers who seeded a week or two ago, check for emergence with these cool soils. (Tiffany Martinka)
—Fertilizer reserves may surprise you. Jim Bessel reports that soil test results have shown lower than expected nitrogen levels, particularly in the Shellbrook region of Saskatchewan where results showed only 13 to 25 pounds of available N in the top 12 inches. But John Mayko says soil sampling results coming back from west central Alberta show about 10 pounds per acre more N than usual. These opposite and unexpected results emphasize the value of soil testing. With soil test results in hand, growers can save money by not overapplying, or save yield and profit potential by making sure nutrient supplies are adequate.