Lessons from the quiet chair

The ritual of spending time here every morning continues to help me

I hear the geese flying overhead on their way back to the wildlife sanctuary, just four miles west of our yard. I see birds perched on a stray self-planted sunflower near the bird feeder. I ponder the words on my lap in my journal as I sit in silence in my morning ritual of the […]


man and women inspecting a side of pork

All-natural meat producer ahead of the times

Pine View Farms beef, pork, poultry, lamb, specialty meats and eggs are prized by Saskatoon chefs

They were “all natural” before “all natural” was cool. Kevin and Melanie Boldt have been giving conscientious meat consumers locally and naturally raised meat options for almost two decades. The Osler, Saskatchewan farmers have made a conscious commitment to ethically raise pasture-grazed and vegetarian-fed animals in a stress-free environment that does not include the use […]


Triple your canola yield

Farmers who don’t like to think about feelings might have skipped this page. Now that we have your attention, learn how to recognize farm stress

Many people don’t like to talk or read about their feelings. But dealing with stress by burying yourself in work instead of talking can backfire. “We all, at times in our life, need some help getting back on track,” says Kathy Decelle, outreach social worker. Decelle has been counselling people in rural northwestern Saskatchewan for […]


Young Manitoba farmers plan their lives

By planning early and including an off-farm pension,
 this young couple will have a secure retirement

A couple we’ll call Roger and Martha, both 29, farm in southern Manitoba. They have combined income of $160,000 a year based on Martha’s town job, which pays $90,000 a year, and Roger’s work on his family farm and his own part-time farm operation for which he draws $70,000 a year. Life is good for […]


Cindy Hoppe with one of her pieces.


Prairie landscape inspires artist

From early childhood, Cindy Hoppe enjoyed a special relationship with her mother, Myrna Harris. Their appreciation of rural life and a mutual love of arts and crafts strengthened that bond and Cindy learned to draw, paint and sew doll clothes, often working alongside her mother. In her early teens, she joined her mother in a […]


Tithonia rotundifolia commonly called Mexican sunflower needs to be better known in Canadian gardens. In Mexico it grows as a perennial to six feet. In our country Tithonia reaches about three feet (one metre) as an annual with drought and heat tolerance. Dazzling three-inch bright-orange flowers attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Deadhead spent flowers for ongoing blooms July through October.

Favourite recipe, gardening stories, thanks from readers

Ted shares what he’s been hearing from you

A handwritten letter is a rare gem, but occasionally one does trickle into my mailbox. As a result I’ll share a recipe for best perogy dough ever, so stick around if you will. Also, best seeding dates according to the moon. Here’s a tip o’ my hat to all readers joining me here on the […]


Woman helping children plant vegetables

Cultivating little green thumbs

School Green Team gets hands-on experience growing veggies

As part of her Grade 3 Green Team science project at Dundonald School in Saskatoon a couple of years ago, Dr. Debbie Miket helped her students plan and plant a small vegetable garden. “A friend told me she wouldn’t be using a portion of her garden plot, so I asked if our Green Team could […]


Farmer sitting in tractor wheel with wheat in hands

Finding a life mate

Seeds of encouragement: Choosing one is a big deal and not many farmers want to talk about it

Over a decade ago I received a wedding invitation from a grateful reader. He had been wondering about how to find a wife, and he read my article on matchmakers. It worked. He wanted to share his joy as a farmer in finding a life mate. There was a family farm case where the 25-year-old […]


Too frosted to forgive?

Forgiveness is an issue that farm families need to take a look at

Man, I can’t believe that guy, every time I make a mistake, he just can’t accept my apology, and he keeps really good track… for years!” Does your farm team have the ability to apologize, and accept mistakes? I was saddened to hear a young farmer confide with me that in all his years, he […]


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Well-deserved honour

Saskatchewan Agriculture Hall of Fame inductee shares her love of horticulture

Sara Williams, one of the most highly respected and best-known horticulturists on the Prairies, was inducted into the Saskatchewan Agriculture Hall of Fame last summer. The annual award is presented to people who have made significant contributions to agriculture, farming and the rural way of life. The Saskatchewan Perennial Society, the Saskatoon Horticultural Society, and the […]