By: Rome Ethredge

Wheat for Grain

I looked at several wheat fields today that were planted for grain and they look pretty good. Some have good growth and are tillering well ( remember more tillers = more future grain heads) and some have just begun to tiller but look ok. I was looking hard for aphids but did not see many, thankfully. Now’s the time to be looking diligently for aphids however due to the fact that they can transmit Barley Yellow Dwarf (BYD) disease, so a pyrethroid spray may be warranted.

I did see weeds coming on pretty strong in some fields. Wild radish is the main problem and some henbit and chickweed also growing well. Many ways to combat these weeds with wild radish being the main concern. (Ryegrass a big problem too, but I discussed it last week.)

Spray window on 2-4D is so narrow I don’t often recommend it and it won’t do much at all on henbit and chickweed. Many growers go with a Harmony Extra mix with MCPA. For MCPA use we need at least 2 tillers. In the photos below you can see that one field I was in has 3 good tillers and the weeds are coming on so grower should go soon with this mixture before the radish gets any bigger for best control. If we find enough aphids we will add a labeled pyrethroid for them.  In the fields with 1 to 2 tillers we will likely delay herbicide sprays.

Just 2 tillers here below, many plants in this field just have the mainstem. We’ll need to check tillering number closely here at the end of January and may need to split sidedressing to get more tillers before jointing.  Plant population here is high so it may not be a problem.

Good fall tillering in this field with 3 good sized tillers on most plants.

Two common wheat weeds below, Henbit in the center and Chickweed on the left bottom.

Here we have wild radish which is a real problem and grows fast.