Canola – Windrow on time, reap the rewards

Published: 9 Oct 2020

This guide will help determine optimal windrow timing.

Windrowing on time maximises income, avoiding losses due to windrowing canola too early. Crops should be windrowed when 60–80% of seed sampled from the middle third of main stem and branches has changed colour from green to red, brown or black.

Key points

  • All varieties should be assessed and treated the same way.
  • Seed colour change is when a minimum of two-thirds (approx. 67%) of the surface of an individual seed has changed colour from green to red, brown or black.
  • Region affects the speed of maturity and seed colour change: Canola in QLD, northern NSW and northern WA cropping zones will mature much quicker than in southern NSW, VIC, SA and southern WA.
  • Sampling location must be carefully considered: Crop maturity within a paddock is affected by many factors such as topography, soil type, crop nutrition and plant population. Both the least mature and most mature parts of the paddock need to be considered and assessed when determining windrow timing. Technology such as satellite and NDVI images can be used when identifying suitable sampling locations.

Copies of this guide are available from GroundCover Direct: Freephone 1800 11 00 44 and email: Please quote Order code GRDC1448 – Canola – Windrow on Time – Reap the Reward$.  A postage and handling charge applies.

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GRDC Project Code: CSP1706-015RMX, DPI1406-001RMX,