What is in this article?:
• Prior to last year, neither Sonny nor Tony Price had even seen canola growing, and now it’s a small, but integral part of their farming operation.
• Last year they planted 97 acres of canola, and Sonny Price says the crop should fit in well with their crop rotation.
SOUTH CAROLINA grower Sonny Price checks the progress of his canola crop in early April.
Canola planted no-till
His canola was planted no-till behind corn. He used a burn down material on his corn, which left it clean when he got ready to plant canola.
The South Carolina grower notes that getting his corn out on time allowed him to get his canola in on time and well ahead of his wheat crop.
Price says he used a little bit more nitrogen and sulfur on canola than he applies to wheat. He applied 100 pounds of ammonium sulfate per acre before planting and came back with 50 gallons of Nitrogen 24S on March 9, to complete the nitrogen and sulfur needs for his canola.
He stresses that the liquid nitrogen formulation had to be applied using straight stream tips to avoid burning the canola.
The split application seemed to work well, Price says.
As for the extra sulfur needed, Caldbeck says on most Southeastern soils canola needs about 20-25 pounds of sulfur during the growing season. However, it’s always best to rely on soil test results to determine exactly how much sulfur is needed.
Part of the learning curve was that after the crop was planted, Price learned canola requires additional calcium. Since many of the soils in the PeeDee area of South Carolina are deficient in calcium, he had to go back this spring with landplaster to provide needed calcium.
“Fortunately Southern States applied the calcium, and they have equipment that allowed them to get it spread on the field without doing much damage to the canola. Next year we’ll address the calcium issue at planting, he says.
Canola is a little like cotton in that it needs about a pound per acre of boron. On canola, he applied boron in three split applications. The first boron was applied on Nov. 21, the second on March 9 and the last application, along with a five-ounce rate of Proline fungicide was applied on March 23.
Hopefully, Price says, he will be able to harvest his canola about June 1.
He will plant soybeans behind the field of canola. Historically, soybean yields behind canola have shown a 10-20 percent yield advantage over beans behind wheat.
AgStrong booked his canola on a per acre basis, based on soybean prices. “That was one of the most attractive features that convinced us to try canola. They seem to be very committed to making canola work from a marketing perspective,” Price says.