Intensive Canola With Chemfallow/Tillage - The Combine Forum

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post #1 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
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Intensive Canola With Chemfallow/Tillage

Back in the 80s, our rotation was wheat-wheat-summerfallow.

We couldnt grow pulses because of the rocky ground and canola/mustard wasn't an option because of the hot summers.

We did fairly well with this rotation. We got a pretty good wheat crop the first year, usually high protein and then the second year, although yields/quality were a bit lower, it was an ok crop. Then we rested the land for a year and quite a bit of organic material to work back in for the next crop, weeds controlled etc.

I am wondering if a similar rotation could work for canola; i.e. canola-canola-chemfallow/fall tillage

Since there are 3 chemistries and dozens of different genetics in canola to rotate along with breaking the disease cycle with tillage every 3 yrs, I am wondering if this could be an option.

(dont bash me please, but on a small farm, economics and weather are my masters and agronomy sometimes has to be pushed)


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post #2 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 03:53 PM
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I wouldn't count on just a year of chemfallow with fall tillage to break a continuous disease pressure cycle. The worst quarter of diseased canola we had last year hasnt seen canola since 2010. We have had canola/canola on the farm before and the second year we made more on oats across the road then the year 2 canola.


Im a small guy too, with rocky land that's been plagued with excess h20 since 2010. My beliefs are that a diverse rotaion will take care of me better then hammering the whole farm into canola or lentils every year to try and chase the almighty dollar. We have been doing good with HRSW and oats in the rotation, trying to get back into the groove of malt, and plan to try flax this year. Might look into fall rye, also.

I dont have as much experience as a lot of guys here do, but I hear grandpa and the other oldtimers talking about having beef cows, milk cows, pigs, chickens and grain; diversity isnt bad and I would be extremely concerned about putting all my eggs in one basket. If it works for you, great, but I wouldnt want to be known as the guy that got the clubroot in the area though.

Just my thoughts, Ive been wrong once before, and I might be again! haha

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post #3 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 04:22 PM Thread Starter
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Just my thoughts, Ive been wrong once before, and I might be again! haha
Well around here, its becoming pick your disease because we cant avoid them all. Root rot, fusarium, pasmo, Sclerotinia, yellow asters, ascotyta, anthranose have all shown here in the past few years.

Genetics is the only option I see to get ahead of them and canola has the quickest genetic cycle of all crops that I have seen.
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post #4 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 04:38 PM
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Back in the 80s, our rotation was wheat-wheat-summerfallow.

We couldnt grow pulses because of the rocky ground and canola/mustard wasn't an option because of the hot summers.

We did fairly well with this rotation. We got a pretty good wheat crop the first year, usually high protein and then the second year, although yields/quality were a bit lower, it was an ok crop. Then we rested the land for a year and quite a bit of organic material to work back in for the next crop, weeds controlled etc.

I am wondering if a similar rotation could work for canola; i.e. canola-canola-chemfallow/fall tillage

Since there are 3 chemistries and dozens of different genetics in canola to rotate along with breaking the disease cycle with tillage every 3 yrs, I am wondering if this could be an option.

(dont bash me please, but on a small farm, economics and weather are my masters and agronomy sometimes has to be pushed)
Of the genes that matter, not the varieties, there are only 2 or 3 effective RLM genes used for blackleg and only a couple for clubroot. You are not rotating anything but rather have the perfect disease nursery.
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post #5 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 04:51 PM
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Some guys in my area don't care. They spend themselves stupid and are now continuous canola because they can't pay the bills. And it is everybody else fault, so if disease comes not there fault. besides they want to seed in spring, harvest in fall, get their cheque sit on there ass all winter. I want to try Flax, they are to lazy to grow that, (straw management).
A lot of farmers are very self centered and that is where the problems are, you may have to force crop rotation because of this. growing plants on top of there dead rotting ancestors never has a positive (sic), unless they evolved there since the beginning of time like a forest.
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Last edited by Combine Pilot; 03-19-2017 at 04:57 PM.
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post #6 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 05:29 PM
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Well around here, its becoming pick your disease because we cant avoid them all. Root rot, fusarium, pasmo, Sclerotinia, yellow asters, ascotyta, anthranose have all shown here in the past few years.

Genetics is the only option I see to get ahead of them and canola has the quickest genetic cycle of all crops that I have seen.

I wouldnt say that. Ive struggled with every disease you mentioned except pasmo. Even sclerotinia and blackleg resistant canola is still susceptible. When we had a tight wheat or oats/canola rotation we had 2x the disease we do now with a 3 or 4 year rotation. Fungicide helps, doesn't work all the time though. You dont need to avoid all disease, just keep them at managable/tolerable levels, and when this wet weather cycle breaks, conditions for a lot of diseases will be less then optimal, making it easier again. How about modifying your farming practices to manage disease? What steps are you taking to manage disease now? Tillage? Burning stubble? Maybe a new crop? Have you looked into Fabas or Canary? Would really suck for the canola market to bottom out and pull a 20 bu crop of canola across every acre 2 years in a row.. Might want to think about the effect insect pressure increasing too, if you're counting on no rotation.
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post #7 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:33 PM
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I

I would try some rr1 beans. Maybe 50-60 acres and see how they do if they do well t hen you have seed for the following years. And your risk level is real low

Couple of my favorite quotes.

" Bigger isn't better. Better is better"
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post #8 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:45 PM
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Jazz it seems like canola straw disappears fast especially when you drive over it or work it the following year. I would be concerned about not enough residue to hold the land down from wind errosion on a dry windy year.
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post #9 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
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Jazz it seems like canola straw disappears fast especially when you drive over it or work it the following year. I would be concerned about not enough residue to hold the land down from wind errosion on a dry windy year.
The idea was to chemfallow through June-Aug, then work it down early fall along with a deep band operation. If we do it a few days after a rain should be no erosion.
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post #10 of 53 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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I would try some rr1 beans. Maybe 50-60 acres and see how they do if they do well t hen you have seed for the following years. And your risk level is real low
Thats an october harvest around here. First frost is usually Sept 10th.

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