GFM Network News


Percentage of average precipitation in Western Canada for the 90 days ending April 5, 2021. (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada map)

Manitoba forage, grassland growers burned by drought

MarketsFarm — An ongoing lack of precipitation, which is showing no signs of letting up in the coming months according to weather forecasts, is already causing problems for Manitoba’s forage and grasslands. Growers in the province have had to deal with three straight years with lower-than-normal precipitation. In 2019, multiple rural municipalities in Manitoba’s Parkland […] Read more

Erin and Paul Kernaleguen have found that a change in forage production practices on their Saskatchewan farm has helped to reduce costs and benefit dairy production.

Dairy farmers see multiple benefits from forage blends

Input costs have been reduced and more acres returned to crop production

Dairy farmers Paul and Erin Kernaleguen near Birch Hills, Sask. say they’re convinced about the value of regenerative farming practices in growing forage crops for their cattle. They farm with Paul’s parents, Jos and Brenda Kernaleugen. “We were a conventional operation until 2012 when we started looking at doing things differently,” Paul says. “Our average […] Read more


Jerry Baerg out checking cattle as graze on chaff piles — all part of keeping nutrients on the field.

Cattle important to regenerative ag program

Producer finds that cattle and crops can complement each other

Jerry Baerg farms grain and cattle in central Alberta near Linden. He grew up on the family farm and worked with his dad, then worked off farm for a while. On his return, he bought into the farm and began farming full time. While attending a soil health/grazing conference five years ago, he began thinking […] Read more

Loose-cornstalk residue left in the field for grazing cattle has a different nutritional value than cornstalk bales.

Cornstalk bales can have a fit in beef diets

It’s not amazing feed, but with proper testing it can work in winter rations

A few years ago I was visiting a small cow-calf operation and as I approached the house I noticed that there were rows of snow-covered round bales that literarily looked like baled alligators. The producer told me he baled left-over cornstalks within days of harvesting grain corn, and said that it took a couple of […] Read more


This photo was taken July 25,2017. It is a good quarter section that has changed hands and belongs to an absentee owner. It was “planted down,” and the result a few years later was a decent stand of bromegrass. This looked like a fair seed crop. But it was later baled as a hay crop.

Les Henry: Fertilizing for forage yields

For higher grass yields, fertilize it like a crop

We often hear “plant it down” when a field is not performing well for annual crops. That may mean simply planting some grass and accepting hay yields determined by the moisture in a given year. It is not uncommon for such stands to perform poorly and then be utilized as pasture. There are many situations […] Read more



Summer bale grazing may work during the dry grazing season.

Another transplanted grazing idea

Report from Down Under: Bale grazing may have a fit in an Aussie summer

Editor’s Note: Keep in mind seasons in Australia are reversed: spring — September to November; summer — December to February; autumn — March to May, and winter — June to August. In my last article, I shared the trials of our swath-grazing attempts on our farm here in Australia compared to what we had done […] Read more



Ben Stewart talks to farm tour members about an annual forage seeding including triticale and forage brassicas that will be cut for swath grazing.

Species diversity is key to year-round grazing

Annual seedings provide important support to perennial pastures

Ben Stewart believes in using a diverse mix of annual, biannual and perennial forages in his summer pasture and winter feeding program to improve rates of gain on his cattle, reduce winter feeding costs and improve soil health. The fact that he also works with a company that sells forage seed might make him a […] Read more

Drought conditions in Canada at June 30, 2018. (Agr.gc.ca)

Drought’s effects linger on Prairies

CNS Canada — After a dry growing season last year in Western Canada, effects of the drought are still evident with news that most livestock producers won’t be doing a second cut of hay. “Pastures and hay fields didn’t get the moisture that they needed to really recharge over that winter period and get a […] Read more