Latest articles

Developing the cherry industry in Western Canada

Saskatchewan couple’s venture into growing cherries turns into establishment 
of on-farm processing plant

When Bruce and Charlene Hill planted 80 sour cherry shrubs on their farmyard near Imperial, Sask. in 2005, they had no idea their venture would result in the establishment of a processing plant on their farm, as well as initiate a nationwide cherry industry. Bruce had been involved in agriculture most of his life but […] Read more

Time to get outside for a picnic

Prairie Palate: Pack up a basket with no-fuss food and enjoy a meal outdoors

Have we forgotten the pleasure of picnicking? Long before the convenience of slow cookers and Crock-Pots, Prairie folks were quick to pack a basket and enjoy a pleasant meal outdoors in the company of family and friends. Many occasions called for a picnic: sport days, rodeos, end-of-school celebrations, church gatherings, Canada Day, 4th of July […] Read more

Farm dads and emotions of quitting farming

It’s my 22nd Father’s Day column and I will do my best to not make “Charlie from Saskatchewan” feel like I am beating up farm dads! A reader asked me to write about the emotions of quitting farming. Let’s take the approach of the farm culture attributes farm founders appreciate. What might it feel like […] Read more

The many benefits of tea

Singing Gardener: Plus, Ted shares excerpts from a phone visit

Is it the age we’re living in, or are we all getting older? How time flies. As a kid I recall seeing a message on a huge sign along the Trans-Canada Highway (I call it the Tea Can for short). The sign said: Time flies and then eternity. Speaking of tea, ’tis said ordinary black […] Read more

Planting and raising raspberries

Singing Gardener: Plus, sauerkraut from crock to jars and making refreshing rhubarb slush

Planting raspberries — and memories of Prairie songs. Also, yours truly had a chance to talk with gardener Margaret Gluska from Cranberry Portage, Manitoba. She’s seeking seeds for Pilgrim tomato and apparently they’re as hard to get as pulling hens’ teeth. As I get older, thoughts sometimes return to childhood days. A number of Prairie […] Read more

Just a salad for dinner?

Prairie Palate: Yes — if it’s a hearty one with pasta and meat like this Vietnamese Salad

You know that woman who goes out for dinner with her date (read: husband) and, despite a full and varied menu, orders a salad? OK, that’s me. I have nothing against a big bowl of pasta or a good steak (blue rare, please) or the seafood special of the day. I love it all. But […] Read more

Help for those tight muscles

Here’s some techniques to try to help loosen up that tense tissue

Ever have a tight neck after a stressful day with no one to rub it for you? Good news! You can release those tense tissues on your own — not quite as relaxing — but it will make you feel better. Soft Tissue Release is a form of massage that involves finding pressure points in […] Read more

Some info on growing artichokes

Singing Gardener: Plus, Ted shares more feedback from readers

As always, lots to write about in Grainews Singing Gardener page. Am sharing more feedback from readers, so thanks to folks who take time to write. Got some thoughts on the best days to go fishing once the rod and reel season opens in your area. Here where I am we’ve got the Portage Diversion spillway that […] Read more


Using wild edibles on our farm

Plants that are often regarded as ‘weeds’ can actually be beneficial

A few years ago we started to learn how to use more herbs and “weeds” around the farm. The one that totally surprised our family was purslane (Portulaca oleracea), or as we call it, wild portulaca. It is very invasive, so if left to grow it needs boundaries with border edging. It’s worth keeping around […] Read more

Blazing Star Wildflower Seed Company

Family business grows native wildflowers and heirloom veggies and markets the seeds

When Renny Grilz’s parents started the Blazing Star Wildflower Seed Company as a farm diversification project in 1992, they didn’t anticipate the interest and success the business would generate. “They were one of the first companies offering wildflower seeds native to Western Canada and did extremely well for the first couple of years. Then the […] Read more