Latest articles

Be ready to scout and control flea beetles

Flea beetles move fast and do a lot of damage. Be sure to keep ahead of them in your canola crops

Flea beetles are easily the most chronically damaging insect pest in western Canadian canola. Damage results in yield losses estimated at $300 million each year. To limit damage, experts recommend acting early when an average level of defoliation level of 25 per cent or more is reached. Early action necessary According to Greg Sekulic, an […] Read more

Scout early for best cutworm control in canola crops

Cutworms may be poised to damage the 2017 canola crop. Be on the lookout for them

Last year, higher than normal cutworm feeding was reported in several locations in major canola-growing regions. Cutworms have the potential to do incredible damage in canola crops. There are five economically significant cutworm species in the Prairies: the pale western, redbacked, army, darksided and dingy cutworm. The first two are the most predominant species. Pale western is […] Read more

Pea leaf weevil moves into new territory

Pea leaf weevils are on the move. Know what you can do about them

Pea leaf weevil numbers are on the rise. In fact, according to Scott Meers, an entomologist with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, they’re moving into areas where producers have no experience with them at all. “We’ve seen a major expansion in the past several years of pea leaf weevil, especially up the west side of central […] Read more

Black beetles on canola buds.

Want better insect surveys? Here’s how you can help

Provincial entomologists are looking to widen their insect survey networks

Every year provincial entomologists hit the fields, setting pheromone-baited traps and monitoring insect activity. Your help with these projects could improve the information available in your region. Alberta Alberta Agriculture and Forestry insect management specialist Scott Meers relies on growers. “We have large areas to cover, so when we get input from growers and agronomists […] Read more

Malted Barley grains

Vigour tests recommended for wheat and barley

Last fall’s harvest may have left some wheat and barley seed less than ideal

Poor harvest conditions can create poor seed quality, and in some cases affect germination and vigour. As a result of last year’s harvest conditions, seed analysts are seeing a wide gap between germination and vigour in Western Canadian wheat and barley seed. Analysts are urging growers to test seed so that they can take action, […] Read more

Narrow-leaved hawk’s beard travelling

This noxious weed is spreading outside of northwest Sask. 
and the Alta. border

Up until recently, narrow-leaved hawk’s beard was mostly found in northwest Saskatchewan and along the Alberta border. A 2014-15 weed survey has revealed that the weed has spread to areas outside of these traditional hotspots. Identification and control can both be difficult. For this reason, it is advised that growers — especially those who live in non-traditional hotspots — take […] Read more

When to spray cabbage seedpod weevil

If you have to spray for the cabbage seedpod 
weevil, get the timing right

The first time Alberta grain farmer Jay Schultz remembers hearing about cabbage seedpod weevil was in 2005 at the University of Alberta when Dr. Lloyd Dosdall warned that it could become a major pest in the province. Schultz, who farms 6,000 acres near Standard, Alta., said that he never really paid attention, that is, until […] Read more

Controlling cleavers without quinclorac

With quinclorac off of the herbicide menu, farmers will need to use other tools

Last spring, the Western Grains Elevator Association (WGEA) and the Canadian Oilseed Processors Association (COPA) advised growers that they would not accept quinclorac-treated canola grown and harvested in 2016. The reason for this announcement was to make sure that grain shipped to customers in other countries remains in compliance with regards to Maximum Residue Limits […] Read more

Blooming rapeseed field at sunset

Back to the agronomy basics in canola

Experts advise growers to focus on quality seed and nitrogen before less conventional inputs

Canola growers have been asking agronomists questions about promoted products. Do they work? And if so, are they worth the additional cost? Two researchers, Murray Hartman, oilseed specialist with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, and Neil Harker, research scientist, weed ecology and crop management, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, conducted a study to test the inputs that […] Read more

New soybean cyst nematode solution

Syngenta has a new biological seed treatment to fight soybean cyst nematode

Last June, Syngenta Can­ada Inc. announced the registration and launch of a new biological seed treatment for soybean cyst nematode (SCN), Clariva pn. Clariva works in a direct and targeted way to reduce the growth and feeding of soybean cyst nematode. While soybean cyst nematode is currently not an issue in Western Canada, it’s good […] Read more