GFM Network News


Manitoba extends fertilizing deadline to Saturday

A warmer-than-usual November has allowed Manitoba’s conservation and water stewardship department to delay its winter fertilizing ban until Saturday (Nov. 14). With soil temperatures not yet at the freezing point, the province announced Monday it would extend its deadline for spreading of phosphorus and/or nitrogen, including synthetic fertilizers and/or manure, to Nov. 14 from Nov. […] Read more

“Spending” phosphorus fertilizer from the soil

We’ve greatly increased the spending from our capital accounts of phosphorus


In my previous column, we established that phosphorus fertilization comes down to simple arithmetic: If we haul more phosphorus off to the elevator than we put on in fertilizer or manure, the phosphorus (P) soil test will go down and with it the crop yield potential. If we add more P than we haul away, over […] Read more


New wrinkles to adding phosphorous

If you own the land, adding phosphorus fertilizer will pay off in the long run


On February 8, 2010, my column looked at the economics of large single applications of phosphorus fertilizer. The economics are good, but the practice is still rare. Most graphs showing fertilizer use in Western Canada start in 1960. Before that, fertilizer use was sporadic and included only a few acres with a modest application of […] Read more

As long as livestock have plenty of clean, fresh snow research shows that should be sufficient to meet winter watering needs. Pregnant cows, however, should have access to fresh flowing water as they get closer to calv- ing. Moisture in silage also helps to meet livestock water requirements in winter.

Snow can be an excellent water source for cattle

Eating snow is a learned behaviour which may take a few days for livestock to adjust

For eons, wild animals in Canada especially the large herbivores have relied on snow as their primary water source through the winter. It has been shown that some wild species like reindeer actually prefer snow if given a choice. Canadian ruminants, especially pregnant beef and bison cows and heifers, can do well eating snow. On […] Read more



On unexpended manure

It’s time for more research on the value manure can add to our land, 
and to find more ways to make use of this valuable resource


In January 2013 there was a Manure Management Update Conference in Lethbridge. I did not attend, but with the wonders of modern technology have reviewed PowerPoint presentations of the talks. It’s not as good as being there, but much better than reading the proceedings. The value of manure First, let’s go back more than 100 years. In […] Read more