GFM Network News

Reading soil sample results

Soil sample reports provide the actual nutrient level information from the field in crop plan creation. You can take your own samples and analyze your own report, or hire someone to take the samples and review the results. The sample If you’re taking your own samples, here are a few tips: Test annually. Nutrient levels […] Read more

Better insect management

When we talk about insect control we start to appreciate that it is a complex problem. There are many factors, like economic threshold, optimum application timing, pre-harvest interval, effect on beneficial insects, and making the crop less of a target for pests. Most of my discussions with farmers are focused on spraying as a direct […] Read more

Better wheat yields

Earlier this winter, Kentucky-based Phil Needham from Needham Ag Technologies, LLC spoke at a clinic at Falher, Alberta sponsored by Bourgault. Needham discussed strategies and steps to improve wheat yields. Phil Needham moved from England to the United States in 1989 and has worked with wheat management systems around the world for over 25 years. At the Falher […] Read more

Timing glyphosate application

Glyphosate will be more effective for different weeds at different times of the year. Pre-harvest application Perennial weeds visible above and in the crop canopy are primary targets for a pre-harvest glyphosate application. Prior to harvest, short days and cooling temperatures signal perennial weeds to start building root reserves. Glyphosate is a systemic herbicide — […] Read more

Five characteristics of highly productive fields

Better yields come from healthy soils. Of five main attributes of highly productive fields, four are a direct result of optimum soil health and not agronomic decisions. Here’s what you can do to build better soil

In an effort to find out why certain fields or areas of fields consistently produce higher yields I discovered that there are certain field characteristics which contribute to the ability to produce more yield. The characteristics of consistently high production areas are: elevated levels of soil biology; better water infiltration; lower bulk density; deeper topsoil […] Read more

Complete crop nutrition recommendations

Developing crop recommendations is a multi-step process, taking into account field history, hopes for the coming year, and, of course, soil test results

While making crop plans with farmers this winter, we tried to build a complete crop nutrition solution for each crop. Our initial plans focused on macronutrients — mainly, fertilizer rate recommendations based on what was left in the soil and what we needed to add to achieve 2012 yield targets. Field conditions To get an […] Read more

Better Quality Controls at Seeding

When farmers make their crop plans, they typically include what will go into each field for seed, fertilizer and pest management. But something that isn’t generally included is a plan for logistics, execution and follow through. Including these things makes sense to me, especially when the optimum seeding window for each crop is only about […] Read more

Trying an integrated optical sensor

Farmers have a lot invested in sprayers. Now they can get even more out of this investment by installing an integrated optical sensor. Sprayer-mounted optical sensors measure crop growth and provide instant information in real time. Sprayers are already making multiple passes over the field each season. Now farmers can easily collect extra layers of […] Read more

Fine Tune Fertilizer Rates By Field, Not By Crop

The goal of a crop fertility plan is to determine the fertilizer rate needed to hit the yield target while accounting for nutrients already present in the soil. But farmers may wonder why it is important to spend time calculating different fertilizer product rates. Why not just use the same fertilizer blend across the whole […] Read more

Four Tips For Choosing Canola Varieties

Harvest is the best time of year to decide which canola variety to plant next year. Field evaluation and variety differences are still fresh in your mind right after harvest. Now s the time to review in-season notes regarding emergence, vigour, flowering, growth characteristics, swathing timing and yield information. This information helps you start making […] Read more