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Spring decisions

A John Deere tractor pulling a sprayer in a field of soybeans

Spring planting has been moving along across Ontario these past few weeks! With some consistent warm temperatures and fewer rain days, the grains are getting planted. But, how do farmers decide what to plant each spring?

This is actual a long process that is generally planned out a few years in advance. Each field will have a different crop rotation that plans out which crops will b planted after each other for a few years- a common rotation is corn, soybeans, wheat for three years. This allows diseases and pests to be broken up between the crops and to break up the amount of nutrients needed or given on a certain field.

#YourFarmers will also look at the soil conditions. If the soil isn’t ready (too wet or cold) they may have to change the grain they wanted to put in and plant another that is better suited to the soil conditions.

Seed costs, markets outlooks and other factors can also impact their decisions.

Spring time is full of decisions for farmers starting with how to plant their crops then the decision on how to best manage the grains. They’ll have to decide if fertilizers should be applied, when and if to spray pesticides to protect the crops. It the start of the growing season, and the most important time. Their decisions today will impact how well their grains grow this year.