10 Tips to Target Higher Flax Yields in 2014
1. USE CLEAN, High % Germination SEED
- Make sure there are no weed or other crop seeds present
- Test for seed-borne disease and germination
- Test for Triffid – if it tests positive, don’t plant it
2. PLANT at a high SEEDING RATE
- Plant at least 40lbs/ac, or higher. You want a final plant stand of 30-40 plants/ft2
3. THINK ABOUT A SEED TREATMENT
- It can help in reducing seedling blight from some seed borne and soils borne diseases. If you use good seed with high germination, that is not cracked and is disease-free, a seed treatment may not be needed.
4. DON’T SEED FLAX AFTER CANOLA
- MASC data has shown a 12% yield loss if you plant flax after canola. Planting after a cereal crop is preferred and high potential yielding.
5. SEED SHALLOW
- 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch depth
6. FEED YOUR CROP
- A 25bu/ac crop uses 70 lbs of Nitrogen – make sure there is enough between soil available and applied nitrogen to support your yield intensions.
7. SEED EARLY
- MASC data shows that if flax is planted the 3rd week of May and earlier there is a yield advantage, after the 3rd week of May and into June, yield potential declines quickly
8. CONTROL YOUR WEEDS
- Weeds are the #1 yield robber in flax. There are pre-plant options for both grassy and broadleaf weeds (even resistant grp 2 kochia and grp 1 &2 resistant wild oat and green foxtail) as well as in-crop options.
9. WATCH FOR DISEASE
- Pasmo can be controlled if you have it. Start checking the base of the stem for banding patterns as flowering begins
10. STAGE YOUR CROP APPROPRIATELY FOR DESICCATION OR SWATHING
- 75% of bolls need to be brown and rattling before swathing or desiccating
- This can speed up harvest and reduce quality issues from frost, but do not do any sooner or you will lose yield and test weight.
For More Information Call the MAFRD Crops Knowledge Centre at 204-745-5663