Many growers, especially in the eastern Prairies, have fields at varying stages. Higher land may have crop at podding stages, while once-flooded lower areas are recovering but still flowering. One harvest plan is to swath these fields at two timings— if the hope is to salvage the late-developing areas.
Section off fields based on staging and yield potential. Know where the greatest yield potential is within the field and plan to focus on protecting it the most. The greatest yield potential includes the plants with most seeds but also earliest maturing to escape a fall frost. Waiting to swath the whole field at once may put these top areas of the field at risk of pod shattering.
Other options to consider while scouting:
— Is the staging so variable that a desiccant may be needed to hasten maturity on the latest plants?
—Would swathing be better than straight cutting or vice versa?
—Is there a lot of green weed growth that will require a pre-harvest application?