QUIZ – Fall counting

Six questions provide tips on what to look for in fields this fall, and how these counts can help with field management in 2021.

1. The amount of seed loss out the back of the combine will change with the weather. We all assume this to be true, and a PAMI harvest loss survey last fall put some numbers to those assumptions. For example, when conditions were sunny, average losses for the survey were 1.0 bu./ac. What was the average loss when combines were operating under cloud cover? 
2. You will send in a soil sample to get a handle on clubroot spore counts in a field. You also intend to do soil tests for fertilizer planning. Can you save time and use the same composite sample for both tests?
3. You want to “count” seed moisture and temperature for each load going into a bin. Canola coming off warm and tough can start to spoil fairly quickly. Clumping is a sign of mould growth that leads to heating. Lab-based research found that canola seeds at 25°C and 10.6 per cent moisture clumped together after _______ days. 
4. You’re counting canola stems per square foot as part of your end-of-season assessments. You have a hoop with a 56cm diameter, and inside that hoop you count 20 stems. This is the average throughout the field. Roughly how many plants per square foot is that? 
5. While doing post-harvest stem counts, check out the weed situation. If you see a lot of perennials, you might want to wait a bit for leaf area to regrow so there’s more surface area to take up the herbicide. What do weed management specialists suggest is the minimum wait time between swathing and straight cutting and post-harvest spraying? 
6. As part of your post-harvest field visits, you also check for verticillium. Checking after harvest is OK timing for this disease because the tell-tale microsclerotia under the stem skin are most obvious. If you find verticillium, what is the recommended number of years between canola crops in fields with verticillium disease?