Latest articles

Ag in Motion: Seeing results where they count

At Ag in Motion, seed, crop protection and fertilizer companies, as well as grower associations and industry members will showcase field crop products as they should be seen — in the ground. Ag in Motion, running July 18-20 at Langham, Sask., northwest of Saskatoon, is home to over 100 acres of crop plots from over […] Read more

Nematodes: they’re molecular mimics

Nematodes are tiny pests with big impacts: parasitic cyst nematodes are quickly becoming a major economic concern for soybean, corn, sugar beet and potato producers. Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) made its grand entrance in the U.S. in the 1950s, and since then has become soybean producers’ top pest, causing significant yield losses annually. In Canada, […] Read more

Measuring soil’s benefits from CTF

It can be called “fractal hierarchical aggregation” or just “fractal aggregation.” Whatever the moniker, the new method of soil health testing promises to offer producers an important metric for assessing soil quality and land stewardship, says Guillermo Hernandez, an assistant professor at the University of Alberta. This spring he published a research paper demonstrating that […] Read more

Putting new ag products to the test

For Bennie Dunhin, agronomy manager at Cavalier Agrow in northwestern Saskatchewan, the question isn’t whether or not a product works. “There’s no new product on the market that doesn’t work somewhere in the world. Otherwise it wouldn’t be a product,” says Dunhin, named Outstanding Young Agrologist by the Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists this year. “It […] Read more

Acreage low, stewardship high for GE potatoes

This year’s Canadian acreage of J.R. Simplot’s genetically engineered Innate potato will be “very small” to non-existent, according to a company spokesperson. Kerwin Bradley, director of commercial innovation for Simplot, says the company’s marketing strategy for new varieties is based on customer polls and identification of marketing channels. “We don’t plant potatoes, or give seed […] Read more

Bringing power to the pasture

Whether you need to water five bulls on pasture before turnout or 500 head of cows grazing corn in winter, solar powered pasture-watering systems offer a flexible and reliable year-round water source for Western Canadian producers, says a long-time manufacturer. Technology and equipment has improved over the years, making it possible to produce watering systems […] Read more

Helping our plants to help themselves

One day, farmers may be able to use natural products to fight blackleg and other diseases

New research that could lead to a biological alternative to chemical fungicides began with work into food safety. “We were interested in whether food-fermenting lactobacilli would produce molecules that prevent fungal growth,” says Dr. Michael Gaenzle, who is leading the research into antifungal lipids at the University of Alberta. Gaenzle’s team came across some molecules […] Read more

Sociology and herbicide-resistant weeds

Think weed management strategies are all about agronomy? There are other factors

Would you tell your neighbour how to farm? Not likely. On the other hand, what if this reluctance to “stick your nose in” was creating a real barrier to the adoption of practices that could help slow down the spread of herbicide resistant weeds? Scientists have a word for this way of thinking. They call […] Read more

Incentives spur interest in solar energy

Thanks to solar energy, this farmer received a credit on his mid-winter energy bill

Tim Sawatzky never tires of the sight of the 80 solar panels that make up his 20.8 kilowatt (kW) solar energy system on his farm near MacGregor, Manitoba. He’s happy to talk about how pleased he is with the system, which is already saving him money three months after he installed it. Sawatzky gave his […] Read more

Crop Advisor’s Casebook: The secret of the swooping birds

A Crop Advisor's Solution from the April 11, 2017 issue of Grainews

Last July, Henry, a Saskatchewan farmer, watched as a throng of birds swooped in and out of his durum wheat field. When he scouted the field, he also found some “black bugs,” which prompted him to give me a call. “You need to look at my durum,” he said. “Birds are swooping, so there must […] Read more