Brassicas

Discussion in 'Dbltree's corner' started by dbltree, Jul 15, 2006.

  1. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Well-Known Member

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    Ok, kinda loaded question but relatively simple....
    The ONLY case, in this dry of a year down south, Brassicas will germinate from "dew or moisture somehow in soil" is if you have massive amounts of organic matter OR have a mat on top like crimped Rye for example. I highly doubt, with how dry it is, you have enough organic matter because I have yet to see a situation where someone does with how bad this drought is BUT - it's possible. For every 1% increase in OM, you can hold basically an additional 16k gallons (ballpark) of water per acre. Which is about 1/2 of rain. That's "additional holding" BUT, in reality, when you're in places with "severe drought" we're, talking lack of moisture down several FEET into the ground, or lower. It's a disaster as of now for germinating anything.
    One the rye.... That's where it'll work. Which, is simply knowledge for the future. 1) Build up your OM & 2) if you think a drought is coming, crimped rye, etc can keep soil moist (it's just like mulch). Drilling through it can be done. residue of the rye moving back over the rows can create a challenge but it will help with moisture. Now, when we are talking about most folks- DISCING & working soil..... That's just further moisture loss.

    Side notes: brassicas are pretty hardy for "hanging on" so if you do get germination, they can hang on longer than you think. BOTTOM LINES: 1) build up OM with dbltree rotation (more moisture holding capacity and "drought prevention over time") 2) if you can drill, ideal. If need to disc, still can try. 3) Be prepared for replanting or late germination if you seed. Which either isn't end of world. 4) If too much time and back up plans go by...... Your rye mix of choice is going to be your final plan of the year along with leaving any successful crops you can. Good luck.
     
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  3. arm

    arm Active Member

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    This was a brand new plot where I burned and tilled in fert. I got maybe a tenth on the seed and didn't see any germination 3 days later. If I remember right, that stuff is up in 48 hours when I've done it before. If it didn't germ and just needs the next rain, great. I don't want to reseed and have both seedings come up and crowd the place.
     
  4. Daver

    Daver PMA Member

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    They can germinate with little to no rain...BUT...there needs to be some soil moisture present for that to happen. My ground is bone dry right now, so I am laying back hoping to catch a rain or two yet and try to time my planting ahead of that. If I planted into that dust now and then it didn't rain...I would get about 5% germination...or less.
     
  5. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Well-Known Member

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    Lemme put in perspective for u.... "moisture in soil"- likely little or none and been like that for long time. I did a replant on beans in early June. Soil was dry then. Drilled into dust. Light little rains here and there. Maybe 10% germination on certain fields that really missed rain. I was in there last weekend and u can dig up 1.5-2" deep beans down the closed furrows. All of em just sitting there. Bright red beans been sitting there for months and gonna result in nothing.
    We need rain that amounts to INCHES. Last year was fantastic for moisture. This year in many places "severe drought". It's really bad. Totally different world this year.
     
  6. vrod

    vrod Member

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  7. hillrunner

    hillrunner PMA Member

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    We have been dry as well but not as dry as some parts of the state. A little under 3 weeks ago I planted 3 brassica plots. I planted all 3 into dust. This is a picture of the plot that received 7/10 s of rain the next morning. the other two missed out and as of a week ago I would say had less than 5% germination and will likely need replanted
     
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  8. IowaBowHunter1983

    IowaBowHunter1983 PMA Member

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    How long do y'all think brassica seed will sit around before it won't germinate at all even when it does rain?

    I planted a bunch ahead of foecasted rain which of course didn't happen
     
  9. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Well-Known Member

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    Good question. Im not certain on brassica seeds where they fit in "survival spectrum". Some seeds seed there for 20 years before germinating in right circumstances. Corn & stuff like that usually gets gobbled or rots if it doesn't get germinated in timely manner.

    Bottom line- I suspect your seeds will stay viable for quite a while in dust. It's a tough one because you don't want to go double seed an area with viable seed. If we EVER get a good rain- u will have your answer and id for sure wait a few days past that to add any seed or make judgements. Good luck!
     
  10. NWBuck

    NWBuck PMA Member

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    Another good reason to seed at a little higher rate than recommended for turnips, etc. Insurance against low germination rate. Assuming, of course, you eventually catch a rain or two.
     
  11. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Well-Known Member

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    IMG_4390.jpg IMG_4716.JPG IMG_4395.jpg IMG_4396.jpg
    Overall, I agree. The 2 elements to that..... You need very high fertility. When crowded & seeded at high rate, you could have poor looking plot if your fertility is not premium. The other risk to high seeded rates.... You will need more moisture. Simply, more plants: more moisture needs. For example, corn seeded at 18,000 per acre VS 32,000 seeds per acre - same soil, drought year - you will have healthier plants and less of chance for failure on the lighter rates. But yes, agree, I like going a little higher in rate, my insurance is making sure my N is super high, P&K well into the high range, PH around 6.5-ish and ideally coming out of several years of rotation where Organic matter has been built up. Example: low rate might be, let's say 2 lbs PPT & 3 lbs radish. High end of that might be 4 lbs turnips, 6-7 radish. I've got away with even higher than that but it was on soil that was 3' deep of dark rich black dirt and had amazing fertility.
    One guy, who is on this site (I'll leave him nameless), helped me seed brassicas, I told him to hit "XYZ area" that was about 1/2 acre (really great fertility soil) while I got about 2 acres on other side of fence "seed bout 3-4 lbs of this mix" - it was in a 15 lbs bag spreader that was full. Came back "all used up, got it seeded". "WHAT?!?!? UH OH". I let it go, lots of rain, fertility & actually turned out just fine. that's RARE though. Very rare. on a year like this, dry, the same ground, would be a disaster. Usually I drill them but I think in some cases disc, cultipacker is nicer. I am thankful for drill during this dry year.

    High Fertility, correct PH, higher Organic matter, weed control & you can afford far more mistakes, less rain and a lot more room for error than having the opposite situation. Which seems like common sense BUT every year I see a lot of brassica (or WHATEVER) failures because folks didn't take the time & $ to make sure soil & planting done right.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2017
  12. NWBuck

    NWBuck PMA Member

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    Ha ha...yeah, 30 lbs/ac. is a bit heavy :) Although we almost always seed at almost half that rate. 12-14 lbs is what I usually shoot for, and we've had excellent results in the past. Makes a big difference if you can drill, which we do not. Cultipack, spread seed, cultipack again. We put about 3 acres in on 8/1 and no germination yet...no rain! One thing I heard an extension guy talking about on the radio this morning related to seeding cover crops is the impact of birds on seed that is not drilled, and I agree. I checked our plots yesterday and each one was black dirt with small birds all over it. Makes me think our 12-14 will be too thin if we ever do get a rain because it's been like this for 11 days.
     
  13. IowaBowHunter1983

    IowaBowHunter1983 PMA Member

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    I had this problem once with a frost seed switchgrass operation on top of a tiny bit of snow. Birds ate well. Zero switch
     

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