Practices


Nov 28, 2022

by Anthony Stibbard

Falling numbers, a test that helps identify the structural integrity of the starch chains, is associated with pre-harvest sprouting. A falling number below 300 results in quality downgrades at receival. The falling numbers figure translates to the baking quality of the grain; therefore, a lower falling number results in poorer grain baking quality and subsequent downgrades at receival. Unfortunately, once the grain has shot there is no way to change its baking quality or otherwise address its falling numbers figure. However, understanding what causes falling numbers can help alleviate these issues in subsequent years. Why Do Different Grain Varieties Have Different Falling Numbers Figures? Grain varieties differ in their susceptibility to falling numbers due to individual variance in grain dormancy. Grain varieties with a high dormancy will delay germination until the dormancy is over. This may buy you enough time in the paddock to get the grain in the silo before grain begins sprouting.  When researching grain varieties for next season, it is worth checking the falling numbers index (FNI) prior to making a selection. Each variety has an assigned FNI that rates varieties for their ability to maintain falling numbers. If you are finding certain varieties have been subject to lower falling numbers than others, it may be worth discussing the falling numbers index rating with your agronomist.  What Causes Low Falling Numbers in Grain?  While genetics also play a pivotal role, environmental conditions are the key driver of low falling number readings. Rainfall at key times throughout the growing season, the duration of the event and the associated conditions can all impact falling numbers.  It is also important to take note of the conditions during grain fill as stress due to drought or temperature during this time can alter dormancy. Because rainfall during the pre-maturation phase has been found to predispose crops to sprouting, it is important to record all rainfall events across the farm during this time in order to better identify which crops may be at higher risk of sprouting.  How to Prevent Falling Numbers in Grain While there are many seasons in which falling numbers aren't an issue, it is in those seasons with widespread rains that proactive management of risk exposure based on specific varietal research selection can be key to reducing downgrades. Getting the crop off as soon as possible is also important to reducing the further exposure of the crop to rainfall events. (Though I know this is easier said than done!)  To prevent low falling numbers figures in grain, try the following recommendations:  If you are keeping your seed for next year and it has been subject to falling numbers downgrades, it is important to do a germination test on the sample before sowing. Grain that has been weathered prior to harvest often has reduced germination and vigour. If you are looking to carry over seed, select a paddock (or area of the paddock) with the highest falling numbers and do your best to segregate this area for seed next year. Falling numbers results can be highly variable and it is worth requesting a retest if you are concerned.  Support Plant Health with Insecticide Products  Find the insecticide products you need at FBN Direct® . With a diverse product portfolio, FBN® has a range of options for growers like you to support plant health. Copyright © 2021 - 2022 Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN", "Farmers Business Network", and "FBN Direct" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. FBN Direct products and services and other products distributed by FBN Direct are offered by Farmers Business Network Australia Pty. Ltd. and are available only where Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. is licensed and where those products are registered for sale or use, if applicable. Nothing contained on this page, including the prices listed should be construed as an offer for sale, or a sale of products. All products and prices are subject to change at any time and without notice. Terms and conditions apply. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS. It is a violation of federal and state/territory law to use any pesticide other than in accordance with its label. The distribution, sale and use of an unregistered chemical product is a violation of federal and/or state/territory law and is strictly prohibited. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided on this page or which is provided by us in any form. It is your responsibility to confirm prior to purchase and use that a product is labeled for your specific purposes, including, but not limited to, your target crop or pest and its compatibility with other products in a tank mix and that the usage of a product is otherwise consistent with federal, state, territory and local laws. We reserve the right to restrict sales on a geographic basis in our sole discretion. You must be authorised to use restricted chemical products under applicable state or territory law. Please consult your applicable state or territory authority for complete rules and regulations on the use of restricted chemical products as some products require specific record-keeping requirements. All product recommendations and other information provided is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for consulting the product label or for specific agronomic, business, or professional advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, consult with a qualified advisor. Neither Farmer's Business Network Australia PTY Ltd nor any of its affiliates makes any representations or warranties, express or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the statements or any information contained in the material and any liability therefore is expressly disclaimed.


Oct 10, 2022

by Jess Sampson

Mother Nature has thrown Aussie farmers another curveball. With recent strong winds, storms and heavy rain across the east coast, harvest won't come easy this year.  Recent weather events combined with higher than average expected yields — resulting in heavy heads — means we should be on the lookout for lodging in our cereal crops.  Lodged cereal crops Lodged crops can remain wet for long periods of time following rain, heavy dew or fog. This can become the breeding ground for foliar diseases and Fusarium Head Blight (FHB).  FHB is a fungal disease that can cause yield losses of 20-100%, along with impacts on grain quality. It is generally noticed in the florets or heads of wheat and barley, which can appear to look bleached white instead of yellow or green. Grains can appear chalky and low weight.   Weather conditions during and after flowering play a huge role in FHB outbreaks. FHB likes warm, wet weather during and after flowering. Spores can be spread by splash droplets or wind, infecting susceptible wheat or barley heads, and can travel long distances.  Mold growth is also something to pay close attention to in lodged wheat. Under favorable warm and wet conditions saprophytic fungi will readily colonise in wheat heads, resulting in a dark mold forming over the heads. To reduce the risk of mold, try to get the wheat dried down as low as possible prior to storing.  Lodging can also cause low test weights if the grain is prevented from fully maturing or filling completely and drying naturally in the paddock. This occurs mostly when the grain is rewetted in the paddock after maturity but prior to harvest. When grain is rewetted the germination process begins, thus causing a reduction in test weight. During a wet season such as this one, it is a good idea to look at pre-harvest options for quicker dry-down. The two main methods used are windrowing or glyphosate application. There are pros and cons to each method, so find what works for you and discuss with your local agronomist.  Windrowing Windrowing can speed up crop dry-down, but if adverse weather causes delays, grain in the windrow can be at a higher risk of pre-harvest sprouting.  Pre-harvest windrowing  Advantages Disadvantages Less susceptible to hail damage Second pass on the paddock Faster dry-down compared to straight cutting Regerm damage if late rain persists Glyphosate application Glyphosate application during the hard dough stage can hasten dry-down in wet conditions. However, there is a seven-day pre-harvest interval, so at most you gain a couple of days. Always follow label directions and use a glyphosate that is registered for pre-harvest over the top (OTT) application.  Pre-harvest glyphosate applications Advantages  Disadvantages Fast application Spray drift potential Even maturing  Poor perennial weed control Good annual weed control Fast dry-down  Strategies to make harvest easier despite lodging Lodging can make harvesting an adventure, but there are a number of things we can do to make harvesting a little easier.  Limit paddock traffic to avoid the wheat sticking to the mud. Harvest in one direction against the grain and, if possible, use crop lifters.  Adjust the reel far enough down to lay the head on the platform. You want to get as low as you can when picking up the wheat to get as much of the plant cut and through the combine as possible. Go slow — the reel should turn just faster than ground speed. Facing the reel forward and down will help to lift a lodged crop.  Don't delay your harvest too long. If there is a break in the weather and the crop is ready, get it off the paddock to reduce possible disease pressures. There are a number of ways to keep an eye on your crops for disease and lodging, so that you can implement the best practice for your harvest. Consult with your agronomist to ensure you harvest a high yielding, high quality grain.  Shop for herbicide products Find the herbicide products you need at FBN Direct®. We have a diverse portfolio to provide product options for growers like you to support plant health. Copyright © 2021 - 2022 Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN", "Farmers Business Network", and "FBN Direct" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. FBN Direct products and services and other products distributed by FBN Direct are offered by Farmers Business Network Australia Pty. Ltd. and are available only where Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. is licensed and where those products are registered for sale or use, if applicable. Nothing contained on this page, including the prices listed should be construed as an offer for sale, or a sale of products. All products and prices are subject to change at any time and without notice. Terms and conditions apply. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS. It is a violation of federal and state/territory law to use any pesticide other than in accordance with its label. The distribution, sale and use of an unregistered chemical product is a violation of federal and/or state/territory law and is strictly prohibited. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided on this page or which is provided by us in any form. It is your responsibility to confirm prior to purchase and use that a product is labeled for your specific purposes, including, but not limited to, your target crop or pest and its compatibility with other products in a tank mix and that the usage of a product is otherwise consistent with federal, state, territory and local laws. We reserve the right to restrict sales on a geographic basis in our sole discretion. You must be authorised to use restricted chemical products under applicable state or territory law. Please consult your applicable state or territory authority for complete rules and regulations on the use of restricted chemical products as some products require specific record-keeping requirements. All product recommendations and other information provided is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for consulting the product label or for specific agronomic, business,or professional advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, consult with a qualified advisor. Neither Farmer's Business Network Australia PTY Ltd nor any of its affiliates makes any representations or warranties, express or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the statements or any information contained in the material and any liability therefore is expressly disclaimed.


Oct 07, 2022

by Jess Sampson

More than 1.3 mmt (million metric tonnes) of sorghum is grown each year in Australia, and a majority of that is grown in Northern NSW & QLD. Grain sorghum in Australia is mainly grown on heavy clay soils with a high water holding capacity. Growing sorghum as part of a rotation can play an important part in disease and weed control for the following winter cereal season.  In Australia, we have the ability to grow grain sorghum that both yields extremely high and contains high protein. To grow high quality and high yield grains we need to apply the appropriate amount of fertiliser at the right time. Source: https://www.pacificseeds.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/ADS241019-Grain-sorghum-nutrition-guide-1.pdf With global shortages, logistics delays and increased pricing, your farm can only benefit from understanding what nutrients your crop requires and the optimum window to apply.  There are a range of nutrients that can affect grain quality or limit production, but the main ones are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) . Second to that under some growing conditions is sulfur (S) and zinc (Zn). As a rule I say nitrogen for leaf growth, phosphorus for roots and shoots and potassium for fruit and flower.  To calculate the uptake for each nutrient we multiply the nutrient uptake by the grain/yield (t/ha). The calculation will also represent the quantity of nutrient likely to be removed if the crop was to be harvested as silage or hay. Nutrient uptake is approximately: N - 30 kg/t P - 4.5kg/t K - 16.3kg/t S - 5.2kg/t Zn - 24g/t  * Fertiliser rates will vary depending on location, soil type, and paddock history Application timing is also key in optimising fertiliser uptake. Sorghum requires 75% of its total nitrogen requirement during the vegetative stage ( 6 leaves open). If nitrogen is short during this period it will significantly reduce the stem growth. The remaining 25% of nitrogen is required during flowering, this timing is key in optimising grain quality and protein content.   Sorghum will utilise most of its phosphorus requirement during booting and early flowering. The P plays a vital role in early root development, energy storage and water use efficiency.  During the vegetative stage (6 leaves open) sorghum will use around 50% of its potassium requirements. Adequate potassium is required for a multitude of reasons from protein synthesis and assisting in the translocation of carbohydrates to increasing disease resistance and improving the plants hardiness.  K-Fulvate 10% can be applied with NPK fertilisers during growing season to quickly correct micro and macro nutrient deficiencies.  Fulvic acids can assist in reducing leaching, providing carbon to the soil and can be used as a chelating agent to ensure that micro nutrients are quickly converted to a form that is readily available to the plant.   As with any crop we grow we need to be aware of the amount of nutrients that are removed when we harvest the crop, either for grain, or hay/silage. To optimise yields in the following crop rotation we need to ensure that we replace what we remove.  The easiest way to calculate replacement rates is to double the rates we removed during harvest.  Typical removal rates for grain sorghum are as follows: NUTRIENT N P K S Zn REMOVAL 15 kg/t 2.9 kg/t 3.3 kg/t 1.3 kg/t 18g/t % OF Uptake removed 50 65 20 25 75 Along with good nutrition we need to manage weeds, pests and diseases in the crop.  Keeping up to date with spray application timings and pest numbers will play a vital role in optimising harvest yields and quality.  Good weed control in sorghum is essential for producing profitable crops. Weeds can cause problems a number of ways, most importantly by competing with crops for available nutrients, sun and water, as well as causing weed seed contamination at harvest. Again, spray application timing is key in weed control.  Source: https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/146355/grain-sorghum.pdf  With soil temperatures on the rise and water tables full, we have the ability to grow a fantastic sorghum crop this year on Australia’s east coast.  Shop for Crop Nutrition Products  Find the crop nutrition products you need at FBN Direct®. We have a diverse portfolio to provide product options for growers like you to support plant health. References https://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/146355/grain-sorghum.pdf https://www.pacificseeds.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/ADS241019-Grain-sorghum-nutrition-guide-1.pdf Copyright © 2021 - 2022 Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN", "Farmers Business Network", and "FBN Direct" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. FBN Direct products and services and other products distributed by FBN Direct are offered by Farmers Business Network Australia Pty. Ltd. and are available only where Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. is licensed and where those products are registered for sale or use, if applicable. Nothing contained on this page, including the prices listed should be construed as an offer for sale, or a sale of products. All products and prices are subject to change at any time and without notice. Terms and conditions apply. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS. It is a violation of federal and state/territory law to use any pesticide other than in accordance with its label. The distribution, sale and use of an unregistered chemical product is a violation of federal and/or state/territory law and is strictly prohibited. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided on this page or which is provided by us in any form. It is your responsibility to confirm prior to purchase and use that a product is labeled for your specific purposes, including, but not limited to, your target crop or pest and its compatibility with other products in a tank mix and that the usage of a product is otherwise consistent with federal, state, territory and local laws. We reserve the right to restrict sales on a geographic basis in our sole discretion. You must be authorised to use restricted chemical products under applicable state or territory law. Please consult your applicable state or territory authority for complete rules and regulations on the use of restricted chemical products as some products require specific record-keeping requirements. All product recommendations and other information provided is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for consulting the product label or for specific agronomic, business,or professional advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, consult with a qualified advisor. Neither Farmer's Business Network Australia PTY Ltd nor any of its affiliates makes any representations or warranties, express or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the statements or any information contained in the material and any liability therefore is expressly disclaimed.


Sep 26, 2022

by Anthony Stibbard

Frost, that localized phenomenon that can be so destructive in spring. The 2022 season has been a particularly challenging one for many parts of Australia. Coming into September, susceptible crops can be severely affected by frost. Being able to identify damage sooner rather than later will help make better decisions to recoup as much of your lost profits as possible. Capturing accurate temperature information is a key to early detection of frost damage in crops. Plant surfaces cool more quickly than the surrounding air, so often air temperature is not an accurate determination as to what exactly is occurring in the canopy. The best method of temperature logging is to use an accurate temperature measurement tool placed at the height of the crop canopy. The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) uses what is called a Stevenson Screen to measure temperature. The screen is raised so that the thermometer is 1.2m above the surface, and hence is not giving you a clear picture as to what is going on in your crop. A general rule of thumb is that the canopy temperature is approximately 1.5 - 2.5°C lower than the Stevenson Screen temperature during a frost event.  *Note it is important to monitor air or crop canopy temperature closely as frost occurs on clear nights in early spring when the air temperature drops to 2°C or less.  If you suspect a frost event has occurred in your canopy and the crop is between stem elongation and grain fill it is wise to inspect the crops as early as possible. Start with any paddocks which are known to be high risk, check low lying areas and light soil types first before inspecting the rest of the paddock. Ensure a wide area of the paddock is inspected as frost events can be highly variable throughout the paddock. Monitor the same high risk areas over the coming days to check for signs of frost damage. *Note frost symptoms may not be obvious for 5-7 days after the frost event.  What to look for? When inspecting individual plants, check the developing heads, the nature of the frost damage depends on the plant development stage when the frost occurs. Crop damage from frost may occur at any stage of development but is most damaging at or around flowering. When looking for damage a magnifying glass and knife are helpful tools in identifying damaged heads, flowers or stems.  Frost at flowering Frosted anthers typically white in colour, will turn a dull brown if affected by frost. The ovaries will appear shriveled as no grain is being produced and the head may have bleached florets. Grain; Frosted grain at the milk stage will turn from its typical white colour to a brown and crumpled appearance. Frosted grain at the milk stage will appear spongy, and brown in appearance and you will not be able to squeeze the milk out of the grain.  Stem frost A pale green or white ring will occur on the stem below the head or between the internodes. The frost affected area may turn white or brown and the heads may bend over.  If you suspect there is any frost damage in the paddock, call your local agronomist and discuss the next steps. It is important to get a clear understanding of the level of damage that has occurred and the likely yield loss. This will help you manage the next steps when considering alternate options, cutting, harvest, manuring or grazing are all options but without knowing the full extent of the damage the best decision may not be obvious. I always like to leave a test strip in a crop that does not reach harvest, just to check you have made the right decision.  Finally, ensure that any paddocks more severely affected than others are logged in your crop planning software, by doing this it will help you make more informed decisions of what and when to plant in high risk paddocks in coming seasons. For more information and help identifying frost affected crops the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) has put together a Frost Identification Guide for Cereals . Shop Crop Protection Products  Find the crop protection products you need at FBN Direct®. We have a diverse portfolio to provide product options for growers like you to support plant health. References https://grdc.com.au/resources-and-publications/all-publications/publications/2020/frost-identification-guide-for-cereals/DPIRD-Cereals-Frost-Identification-Guide-October-2020.pdf https://www.agric.wa.gov.au/sites/gateway/files/GRDC-Managing-Frost-Risk-Tips-and-Tactics-Frost-050216-northen-southern-and-western-region%20%281%29%20%281%29.pdf https://media.bom.gov.au/social/blog/916/ask-bom-how-is-temperature-measured/ -- Copyright © 2021 - 2022 Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN", "Farmers Business Network", and "FBN Direct" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. or its affiliates. Products and services are offered by Farmers Business Network Australia Pty. Ltd. and are available only where Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. is licensed and where those products are registered for sale or use, if applicable. Nothing contained on this page should be construed as an offer for sale, or a sale of products. Terms and conditions apply. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS. It is a violation of federal and state/territory law to use any pesticide other than in accordance with its label. The distribution, sale and use of an unregistered chemical product is a violation of federal and/or state/territory law and is strictly prohibited. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided on this page or which is provided by us in any form. It is your responsibility to confirm prior to purchase and use that a product is labeled for your specific purposes, including, but not limited to, your target crop or pest and its compatibility with other products in a tank mix and that the usage of a product is otherwise consistent with federal, state, territory and local laws. We reserve the right to restrict sales on a geographic basis in our sole discretion. You must be authorised to use restricted chemical products under applicable state or territory law. Please consult your applicable state or territory authority for complete rules and regulations on the use of restricted chemical products as some products require specific record-keeping requirements.


As harvest season quickly approaches, it’s important to keep your operation moving smoothly and efficiently. For many farms, harvest aids are an essential part of this goal. What Are the Benefits of Harvest Aids?  Harvest aids are used to desiccate weeds that can interfere with harvest. Left green, these weeds can go through your harvest equipment and impact its efficiency, causing possible harvest losses, decreased grain quality, and loss of profit potential.  While harvest aids don’t speed up maturity, expedite drydown, or increase yields, they can help reduce the production of seed from weeds, depending on the weeds present and their growth stage, as well as the herbicide used. Corn Harvest Aids Used primarily to keep weed escapes out of your combine, common corn harvest aids include AIM® EC ,  Willowood Paraquat * and Ag Saver Glyphosate. At application, corn should be at least to full dent with the milk line two-thirds down to avoid any yield losses.  Soybean Harvest Aids Similar to corn applications, soybean harvest aids are primarily used to manage weeds, but they also desiccate and remove all the green soybean material that could otherwise gum up your harvest equipment.  To avoid yield loss, soybeans need to be at least at the R7 growth stage. While there are some costs associated with harvest aid application, benefits including an earlier harvest date, less dockage at delivery and a possible bonus for early delivery can outweigh these factors.  The most commonly used soybean harvest aids include AIM® EC and  Willowood Paraquat *. As always, read and follow all label directions when using harvest aids. Coverage, rates, timing and adjuvant use may vary. Buy Harvest Aids Through FBN Direct Double down on savings and convenience when you shop for ag chemicals on FBN Direct. Using FBN’s convenient online store, simply search for the products you need with transparent pricing information and get them shipped directly to your farm. It’s just one of many ways we’re making farming better for farmers. __ Copyright © 2014 - 2022 Farmer's Business Network, Inc. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, “Farmers Business Network”, “FBN”, "Farmers First", and “FBN Direct” are trademarks or registered trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc.  “Aim” is a registered trademark of FMC Corporation. “AgSaver” is a registered trademark of AgSaver, LLC. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. FBN Direct products and services and other products distributed by FBN Direct are offered by FBN Inputs, LLC and are available only in states where FBN Inputs, LLC is licensed and where those products are registered for sale or use, if applicable. If applicable, please check with your local extension service to ensure registration status. Nothing contained on this page, including the prices listed should be construed as an offer for sale, or a sale of products. All products and prices are subject to change at any time and without notice. Terms and conditions apply. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW LABEL DIRECTIONS. It is a violation of federal and state law to use any pesticide product other than in accordance with its label. The distribution, sale and use of an unregistered pesticide is a violation of federal and/or state law and is strictly prohibited. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided on this page or which is provided by us in any form. It is your responsibility to confirm prior to purchase and use that a product is labeled for your specific purposes, including, but not limited to, your target crop or pest and its compatibility with other products in a tank mix and that the usage of a product is otherwise consistent with federal, state and local laws.  We reserve the right to restrict sales on a geographic basis in our sole discretion. You must have a valid applicator license to use restricted use pesticides.  Please consult your state department of agriculture for complete rules and regulations on the use of restricted use pesticides, as some products require specific record-keeping requirements. All product recommendations and other information provided is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for consulting the product label or for specific agronomic, business,or professional advice. Where specific advice is necessary or appropriate, consult with a qualified advisor. Neither Farmer's Business Network Inc. nor any of its affiliates makes any representations or warranties, express or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the statements or any information contained in the material and any liability therefore is expressly disclaimed. *RESTRICTED USE PESTICIDE Due to acute toxicity. For retail sale to and use by certified applicators only – NOT to be used by uncertified persons working under the supervision of a certified applicator. Herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, adjuvants, and biostimulants can be ordered online and via mobile app. Please contact an FBN Sales representative for fertilizer and seed orders.


Jun 14, 2022

by Brad Roberts

The strength of Farmers Business Network® is the opportunity to share information, insight, and feedback between you and your fellow farmers. Stay Up to Date This Planting Season We are currently polling members to track Canadian progress for cereal, canola, and soy during this year’s planting season. And luckily, you’ll be able to track those results right here on this page. Locking in on the correct data is important for all of us. Week Ending June 14, 2022 Here's this week's soybean planting progress for 206 farms over 0.66 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending June 2, 2022 Here's this week's soybean planting progress for 223 farms over 0.76 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 26, 2022 Here's this week's canola planting progress for 533 farms over 2.59 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 16, 2022 Here's this week's cereal planting progress for 521 farms over 2.34 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Copyright © 2015 - 2022 Farmer's Business Network Canada, Inc. All rights reserved. The sprout logo, "Farmers Business Network," "FBN,", "Farmers First", "FBN Direct," "F2F Genetics Network", "Pro Ag", and "Professional Ag Distributors" are trademarks, registered trademarks or service marks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. or its affiliates.


Jun 13, 2022

by Brad Roberts

The strength of Farmers Business Network® is the opportunity to share information, insight, and feedback between you and your fellow farmers. Stay Up to Date This Planting Season We are currently polling members to track U.S. progress for corn and soybeans during this year’s planting season. And luckily, you’ll be able to track those results right here on this page. Locking in on the correct data is important for all of us. Week Ending June 13, 2022 Here are the results of this week's soybean planting progress for 2,774 farms over 6.3 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending June 7, 2022 Here are the results of this week's soybean planting progress for 2,346 farms over 5.8 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending June 3, 2022 Here are the results of this week's corn planting progress for 2,975 farms over 7.1 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 31, 2022 Here are the results of this week's soybean planting progress for 2,069 farms over 5.0 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 25, 2022 Here are the results of this week's corn planting progress for 2,883 farms over 6.9 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 20, 2022 Here are the results of this week's corn planting progress for 2,114 farms over 6.3 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 17, 2022 Here are the results of this week's soybean planting progress for 2,180 farms over 5.2 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 11, 2022 Here's this week's corn planting progress for over 2,075 farms over 5.9 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending May 2, 2022 Here are the results of this week's soybean planting progress for 1,490 farms over 3.1 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending April 28, 2022 Here's this week's corn planting progress for over 2,044 farms over 4.7 million acres. Click here to enlarge the image. Week Ending April 22, 2022 This week we're tracking corn planting progress. Check out the data. Click here to enlarge the image. Copyright © 2014 - 2022 Farmer's Business Network, Inc. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, Farmers First flag logo, "Farmers Business Network," "FBN," and "Farmers First" are registered trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc. or its affiliates. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Terms and conditions apply.


May 04, 2022

by Rejeana Gvillo

With planting progress for the US lagging the average for a handful of crops, lots of questions about prevent plant and the risk around those totals are surfacing. Already the world is facing supply uncertainty, and the threat of losing additional ground for corn production specifically heightens concerns. To answer whether we should be concerned about prevent plant now, we looked at historical levels of planting progress and the relationship to prevent plant totals, then zoomed in on North Dakota (ND) as risks there are mounting.   Digging into the data We gathered data from two key sources to answer the question: is it too early to be concerned about prevent plant?   Weekly Crop Progress reports - these are issued by USDA on Mondays (as of the prior Sunday) during the key weeks of the growing season for the US - usually April-October or so, depending on the year. FSA crop acreage data - these data sets are released monthly, usually from August - January.  The data included progressive totals of prevent plant, failed, planted, and volunteer acres with the final report usually released in January. Crop progress to date vs history - Focus on US corn As of April 24, the US corn crop was 7% planted versus the average of 15%.  Going back to 1980 and looking at the same week across time, here are some stats. Bolded years are record-yielding years, green years represent record-production years. So, at the national level, the current planting pace to date is not worrisome. We have had several years of progress that have run behind this year’s to date pace that ended up being records (2009, 2013, 2014).  Historical vs April 24 US corn planting progress stats Back to 1980 Minimum progress 2% (1984, 1983) Maximum progress 50% (2010) Median progress 9% (including 2011, 2015) Average progress 11%  (2007) Years below 7% 14 (including 2008, 2009 , 2013, 2014 , 2018, 2019) Years above 7% 24 Years at 7% 5 (1981, 1995, 1997, 2020, 2022) Source: USDA Does North Dakota pose risks? At a national level this year’s corn planting pace to date does not seem too threatening. But we decided to specifically zoom in on North Dakota. We did that for a couple of reasons. First, ND has led the US in prevent plant acres of major crops in five of the last 15 years making it highly prone to planting challenges.  And this year’s planting season has not started out well as record cold temperatures for this time of year, combined with several big snow events, have kept farmers on the sidelines. While this time of year is generally not the height of planting in ND, the weather in April along with the forecast through the first week in May suggest ND could face an uphill challenge getting the corn crop in the ground over the next 30 days. Precip concerns Over the 2nd half of April, corn growing regions in North Dakota got nearly 4 inches of moisture from several feet of snow fall. That is the highest two-week total for this time of year with the next highest being 1986 at 3 inches and 0.8 inches on average. Unfortunately for producers, there is ample moisture in the near-term forecast as well which stretches into the first week of May as of this writing.  Temp concerns On top of all the moisture, temperatures have been record low for this time of year. The average daytime high for the 2nd half of April is projected to be a brisk 41 degrees, a full 17 degrees below average at this time of the season. The most recent year that was close was 2013, when the last half of April temperatures were 44 degrees. That was a year when North Dakota had significant corn prevent plant, with 13% of the state’s corn acreage not planted. Here again, weather models are forecasting continued cold to persist into the first week of May.  We still have time Still focusing on ND, we looked at the day of the year (DOY) that ND historically has 10% of the crop planted, 20% planted, 30% etc. We then tested those interpolated values with prevent plant totals for each year.  The DOY we need to keep an eye on is around 145 or May 25. If the state has 60% or less of intended corn in the ground by then, the risk of having prevent plant acres increases significantly.  Essentially, in the coming 28 days, ND corn planting progress needs to be at that threshold or more to alleviate concerns about not getting the whole corn crop in the ground. What it means for the farmer The world is already on edge about price risk in the grain and oilseed complex. US farmers surprised the market in March with lower than expected corn intentions for the coming growing season. Any hint of further cuts in acreage due to Mother Nature’s fickle ways could add more fuel to the price outlook. While still time to see a change in weather to have beneficial impacts in planting pace, it will require a significant warm and dry trend in the Upper Midwest to give farmers a shot ahead of the late May deadline.  FBN Market Advisory services, including FBN Market Intelligence, are offered by FBN BR LLC - NFA ID: 0508695. The risk of trading futures and options can be substantial and may not be suitable for all investors. We do not guarantee customers will receive specific benefits or value from participating; results will vary and may result in loss. All information, publications, and reports, including this specific material, used and distributed by FBN BR LLC shall be construed as a solicitation. FBN BR LLC does not distribute research reports, employ research analysts, or maintain a research department as defined in CFTC Regulation 1.71. This newsletter contains information obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but its accuracy is not guaranteed by FBN BR LLC. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. For the purposes of quality assurance and compliance, phone calls to and from FBN BR LLC may be recorded.   Copyright ©2022 FBN BR LLC. All rights reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN" and "Farmers Business Network" are registered trademarks or service marks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc.  


Feb 11, 2022

by Darryl Paulhus

Being a transplanted Canadian, I have been living and working in Australia for the past 16 years, mostly in the agriculture field. I am originally from a small farm in central northern Saskatchewan. Pulse crops played a large part in rotations, mainly field peas starting in the mid-80’s. With 1980’s technology this was a struggle due to lodging, disease and the short growing season. An Australian Canadian perspective on pulse crops My area had approximately 93 frost free days. This makes for a very compact growing season. So harvesting pulse crops was very challenging and they soon lost favour amongst growers and Canola started to become the main crop other than wheat and barley. Canada has gone on to become the world's largest exporter of Canola.  Field peas made a resurgence in the mid-90’s as better varieties became available that resisted lodging and disease. Most of the field peas were/are grown in the northern and Eastern Saskatchewan grain belt that has poorer soils than central Saskatchewan but has better rainfall. Central Saskatchewan was always the hotbed of pulse growing, especially lentils, chickpeas and dry beans. Most of this lentil production is exported to India and Turkey. Chickpeas and dry beans’ main market is the USA. Central and southern Saskatchewan were ideal to grow lentils and chickpeas and durum wheat as they have quite hot summers with lower rainfall in most of central Saskatchewan which has an average rainfall of 200mm per year. Southern Saskatchewan this total is even lower at 120 to 150mm per year. Snow does help this somewhat but with 300mm snow equalling 25mm rain it is not the answer to their moisture needs (dry beans include black, navy, faba, pinto). Lupins are a very new crop in western Canada with trials just starting in 2019/2020 to see the agronomic benefit of this crop into the western Canadian feed market. They have a ways to go to prove any benefits over the traditional barley or corn rations. Eastern Canada, mainly Ontario, grows lots of corn and soybeans as their climate is better adapted to these crops than western Canada. Wheat is also a large crop in Ontario along with dry bean pulse production. Ontario has not been as affected by the extreme dry conditions experienced in western Canada in 2021. We’ll focus on western Canada as that is the area that has the most relevance to what we grow in Australia.  How we can leverage this knowledge in Australia The 2021 crop in western Canada was one of the worst on record with many of my mates recording the lowest yields they have ever seen since the 1930’s. Yields were in the 100 to 200kg per ha over large areas. Fortunately, they have a well established crop insurance program that has helped them remain viable. Normally, these kinds of drought conditions come in two or three year lengths, the last one being in 2001, 2002 and 2003. Their outlook for the 2022 growing season looks to be dry as many paddocks were harvested extremely low to the ground which has made any capture of moisture extremely limited. The confidence of a good season in 2022 among all the people I talk to in Sask. and Alberta is not optimistic of a good year. Below average year is their expectations.  They have the lowest carryover of crop in near history. This bodes very well for us here in Australia as we are all aware that the grain markets price the Australian crop after the North American harvest is underway. Even with the expected increase in pulse crop seeding hectares in Australia due to high fertiliser prices, the pricing should stay very firm in 2022. As always many factors play into this scenario. In pulse crops, plant stand is very important as most pulse crops do not compete well with weeds. Seeding rate plays a huge part in this; a typical seeding rate for lentils in Saskatchewan Is 85 kg/ha. Farmers that I have worked with in Australia have upped their lentil seeding rate to 65/70 kg/ha with very good plant stand numbers and increased yields over the lower seeding rates they were using previously. Most pulses we grow in Australia fit into a similar scenario. It can be very advantageous to try different seeding rates on your farm to see if a different seeding rate can pay benefits in your farming system. In pulse crops, inoculant plays a huge part in the growing of these crops as pulse crops once established can provide not only their own nitrogen but can also provide extra nitrogen to the following crops. Inoculation is the process whereby bacteria are coated onto the seed; this bacteria then infects the roots to create the symbiotic relationship with roots to allow nitrogen from the air to be absorbed by the plant to not only be used for growth but also to supply an excess that is left in the soil for the following crop.  All pulse crops should be inoculated with the correct strain of bacteria to help the plant produce this excess nitrogen and maximise the benefits of the pulse crop. Most soil contains small amounts of the correct strain of bacteria for nitrogen production but inoculation ensures that there will be enough to infect the roots. This is why these crops have become instrumental in our modern farming system rotations. Learn more To find out more about our range of products available to help your farming operation, please visit fbn.com/en-au/direct Copyright © 2021 - 2022 Farmers Business Network Australia Pty Ltd. All rights Reserved. The sprout logo, "FBN", "Farmers First", "Farmers Business Network", and "FBN Direct" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Farmer's Business Network, Inc.


With the high price premiums organics offer, you may feel the cost of expensive equipment is justified. But spending too much too soon, especially when you have smaller acreage, is a good way to end up in the red. Organic farmers need to do their due diligence to ensure their equipment purchases are wise investments.  Here are six tips to avoid overspending on farm equipment for your organic operation: Do the math Calculate the per-acre cost and ROI for any equipment you want to purchase. That includes not only the price tag, but also the cost to store it, operate it and maintain it. And don’t forget depreciation. If the numbers seem shocking, think about other ways to get the work done on your farm. Most times, it can be done at much less expense than you’d guess.  Keep your equipment stock simple It’s easy to feel like you need all of the options out there to run a successful organic operation. The truth is, most farmers can be successful with just a rotary hoe and a cultivator. If you’re wondering whether a piece of equipment is a good decision, ask yourself: Does it solve a problem? Or is it merely an expensive way to deal with a problem? Usually, buying an expensive piece of iron or machinery is only a patch to the challenges you face rather than a permanent fix.  Take the emotion out of it At AgriSecure, we always encourage organic farmers to run the numbers when they’re not in a stressful situation. When you’re facing a big problem, it’s easy to make bad decisions out of desperation. Let the math decide whether you’re making a good call, not your emotions. Make the most of your crop rotation You can get more out of the equipment you have by designing a solid organic crop rotation. A good rotation should help suppress weeds, so you don’t need to invest in expensive equipment like row crop flamers. It can also help balance out fieldwork timing, so you’re not trying to do the same task for every acre at once. Hire it out Sometimes, it makes more financial sense to outsource work than to buy the equipment and do it yourself. Consider any weaknesses or areas you struggle with that you could hire someone else to handle. Fit your investments to your farm There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to deciding on equipment. Maybe you’re great at bringing old parts back to life, so buying used equipment would be a wise investment. But if that’s not your strength, maybe you’re better off leasing the machinery and letting the dealer handle any repairs. It’s all about tailoring your purchases in a way that will allow you to become the most cost-efficient organic producer you can be. Tap the experts for guidance If you’re trying to decide what equipment you need to succeed in organics, AgriSecure can help. Our experienced team of organic farmers can help you determine what’s a necessity vs. a "nice to have" and whether a purchase makes financial sense for your farm. Contact us today or visit our website agrisecure.com for more info.