GFM Network News


Triple Green Products has created a grain drying heat source designed to use a variety of biomass products.

Manitoba company offers biomass grain drying system

The BioDryAir system supplies heat for grain drying from a variety of biomass products

As the federal government moves closer to implementing a carbon tax, the impact of that on farmers’ fuel costs are bound to be significant. And the effect of that most talked about lately has been on the cost of gas for drying grain. One Manitoba company thinks it can offer producers a better, cheaper method […] Read more



St(RAW) deal

St(RAW) deal

Don’t rob our Prairie croplands — help rejuvenate them by working in all crop residues

Here we go again. “Alberta May Get Straw Plant” was a headline that appeared last summer in an agricultural publication. Why the concern? How many of you remember those massive piles of straw on the Trans-Canada Highway near Elie, Man., just east of Winnipeg? There were stacks and stacks of big, round straw bales — […] Read more

An eight-inch-wide strip of tillage in a field with heavy corn residue.

Several benefits come with an eight-inch-wide strip of tillage

Western Canadian row crop farmers Dean Toews in southern Manitoba and John Kolk in southern Alberta have different levels of experience with strip tillage, but both see the value of working up these eight-inch-wide strips of soil in their fields with a range of production and conservation benefits. Toews, who is part of the family […] Read more


Pea root rot moves into new cropland about the same way as clubroot. Follow the clubroot protocol.

The looming Prairie-wide pea crop disaster

Follow the clubroot protocol to ensure your future as a pea grower

When I first became involved in checking out pea diseases in Alberta in 1974, pea crops were few and far between. Pea growing was somewhat of a disaster. The pea variety generally grown was called Trapper. This was a tall, six-foot vine that lodged as soon as pod-filling took place. The mass of lodged leaves […] Read more

Stopping the spread of wild oats

Stopping the spread of wild oats

There’s a fresh focus on the decades-old problem of herbicide-resistant wild oats

There are a number of things from the 1970s few people wish to see return: leisure suits, avocado-coloured bathroom fixtures and platform shoes may come to mind. But if you’re a crop farmer, there’s a more serious threat from that era making a comeback — wild oats. Sixty-nine per cent of wild oats across the […] Read more


Several participants attended a field day on Walker Farms to have a look at the cocktail blend of forages. Cattle, in the background, will eventually move into this productive feed as part of a high-intensity, rotational grazing program.

Livestock can benefit crop production

Combining the two benefits both beef and crops, says a Saskatchewan producer, and let’s not forget about the soil

Lance Walker says incorporating the livestock enterprise into more of the grain component on the family’s central Saskatchewan farm in recent years is already showing signs of increasing production, while reducing input costs. He’s excited to see where increasing the synergy between the two enterprises — that includes feeding cattle on cropland, multi-species cropping and […] Read more

The cover crop of fall rye seeded late in 2018 appeared to have a lasting effect to help control weeds as Fensky seeded flax in the spring of 2019.

Regenerative agriculture beats high input costs

Alberta farmers apply a new mindset to crop production

Shorty Fensky says it was largely a matter of farm economic survival as he forgets about the “Y” word and applies crop production practices that focus on profitability for their family run mixed-farming operation in central Alberta. Fensky, who along with his brother Cevin produce cattle and crops at Thorsby, about half an hour southwest […] Read more


Some crops are a little more salt tol­erant — like canola shown above as well as alfalfa, corn, oats and wheat — and you will probably not see sig­nificant yield loss until you hit a conductivity number of about two mS/cm, says Lyle Cowell with Nutrien Ag Solutions.

Crops and saline soils

Plant something, but choose carefully

When it comes to planting most annual cash crops on saline land, Lyle Cowell does not mince words: stop. “When a cattle farm has a cow that is no longer productive, that cattle farmer will not continue to try to breed that cow. It will be culled,” says the agronomist with Nutrien Ag Solutions in […] Read more

Anderson cattle graze in early winter an area of the stockpiled annual forage blend that wasn’t cut for swath grazing.

Improving pastures through regenerative agriculture

A low-input strategy is paying off for this central Alberta producer

Brendon Anderson took over the family farm near Rimbey in central Alberta a few years back and is now focused on regenerative agriculture to improve soils and forage production. Ultimately he would like to get to a system of year-round grazing, but that may not be possible in some winters that deliver nearly four feet […] Read more