Small Grains News & Updates
Happy May Everyone,

Jim Asmus sent me this picture yesterday at his farm near Manilla, IA in Shelby County. Despite the slow spring, the oats and underseeded alfalfa are catching right up.

After you wrap up soybean planting and turn your mind to spraying don't forget your small grains! The window for most field operations is early to avoid tissue damage and lodging. This edition of small grains news includes resources for successful early field operations and a long roster of small grains events that we've lined up for this summer. Get out a pen to mark your calendars!

See you in the field,

Alisha
PFI Wants Your Ideas for the Small Grains Conference
We will hold our second annual small grains conference this year in Mankato, MN on July 30 and I want to know what YOU want to hear about at this unique all-day event. Do you need more information about the efficacy of fungicides? Creative ideas for small grains marketing? Do you have a favorite speaker you've seen on youtube that you'd like to see present live?


Please take 3 minutes to provide this feedback - especially if you farm in Minnesota - so I can make this a useful learning event. Take the survey or email me ( alisha@practicalfarmers.org ) with your ideas by Friday May 25 .
June 1 Call on Designing the Right Summer Cover Crop
"Cover Crop Dave" from Legacy Seeds Inc. and plantcovercrops.com will guide us with his top tips for designing a summer cover crop mix on Friday, June 1 Noon - 1 p.m.

Would you like to graze the cover with your cattle? Take it as hay or silage? Or perhaps you're wondering how to maximize your nitrogen production if you didn't under-seed a legume. Dave will discuss how we can best use the long cover crop window after small grain harvest to address these goals on your farm. To join the call dial 641-715-3620 and enter passcode 357330# when prompted.
Add Your Business to the Small Grains Directory
Do you have a swather? Would you be interested in picking up business from your neighbors? List your services in our small grains directory!

You can go online to view the current  2017 small grains directory  -- if you'd like your name to be added or your information has changed from what is listed here, please respond to me ( alisha@practicalfarmers.org ) with an email that includes: 

  1. Service(s) you provide (seed cleaning, seed buying, grain buying, or NEW! custom swathing)  
  2. Small grains varieties you buy if you are listing as a seed or grain buyer (barley, oats, rye, triticale or wheat) 
  3. Business name
  4. City and State 
  5. Phone number 

Please provide any updates by Wednesday May 23 .
EVENTS
Small Grains Shared Learning Call
June 1 Noon - 1 p.m. | Designing the Right Summer Cover Crop Mix for You
Dial 641-715-3620 and enter passcode 357330# when prompted.

June 5 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. | Anthony Farms Inc. hosts KWS & Albert Lea Seed House Field Day
42505 County Rd 15, Saint Peter, MN 56082

June 6 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. | Jude Becker Farm hosts KWS & Albert Lea Seed House Field Day
15346 Becker Ln, Dyersville, IA 52040

June 7 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. | Rosmann Family Farms hosts KWS & Albert Lea Seed House Field Day
1222 Ironwood Rd, Harlan, IA 51537

June 19 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Arlyn and Sue Kauffman host PFI Field Day
25186 Popcorn Rd., Weldon, IA 50264

June 27 10 a.m. - Noon | Titan Machinery hosts PFI Field Day
23604 Diagonal Road, Grundy Center, IA 50638

June 28 5 - 8 p.m. | Sprague Bees and Beef hosts PFI Field Day
United Christian-Presbyterian Church, 1500 Industrial Ave., Bedford, IA 50833

July 30 10 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. | PFI Annual Small Grains Conference
Centennial Student Union Minnesota State University-Mankato Campus
620 South Rd., Mankato, MN 66001
IN THE FIELD
Be Ready to Fertilize
Make sure you're ready to apply fertilizer at the right time. Check out these resources:

  1. The growth stages fertilizers and fungicides episode of our rotationally raised video series.
  2. The blog from March 2017's shared learning call with agronomists on optimal fertilizer strategies.
  3. The blog from June 2017's shared learning call on Mark Ditlevson's fertilizer timing and rates.
Fungicides

How do you know when to spray fungicides and what to spray? Check out these resources:

  1. Every year we include fungicide trials as part of our oat variety trial testing. This shows yield response to fungicides in oats.
  2. Lee Brockmueller's presentation from the 2017 small grains conference covered fungicides for wheat and oats.
Adjust Side Dress Application for Corn Following Legume Cover Crop
It's not too late to take a late spring nitrate test or pre-sidedress nitrate test if you grew a legume cover crop like clover last year. Backing off of fertilizer inputs in the corn year is a key aspect to increasing profitability of extended rotations. Check out these research reports and other resources on how much nitrogen you can generate with a legume cover crop after small grains:

  1. Nitrogen Rate Comparison in Corn Following Green Manure Cover Crop Mixes
  2. Underseeded vs. Mid-Summer-Seeded Green Manures for Corn
  3. The Freedom from Inputs episode of our Rotationally Raised Video Series.
Looking for more? Contact us today!
Alisha Bower
Strategic Initiatives Manager
(515) 232-5661
Sarah Carlson
Strategic Initiatives Director
(515) 232-5661