GFM Network News


How to start your farm plan for this year

Q & A with an expert

Q: It’s a new year. Where do I start when making a farm plan for 2021? A: January and February are often the months we think of as a new start on crop production, protection and financials for the upcoming spring season. No doubt this winter has been unique with the COVID-19 protocols in place, […] 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


Crop protection and rebate programs

Q & A with an expert

Q: Should supplier rebates play a role in making crop protection decisions? A: The decision about which products growers choose for their farming operations is dependent on many factors. These factors should include product efficacy, rotational and environmental considerations and price. As an agrologist, growers often ask me, “What is the best product?” My answer, […] Read more

Rebate roundup 2021

Program details to maximize your input dollars and put cash back in your pocket

Once again, it’s time for the Grainews annual rebate roundup. While rebate programs aren’t the main factor in decision-making for the crop protection process, producers need to know their options. Without further ado, and in alphabetical order, here’s our annual roundup of available rebates in Western Canada for the 2021 growing season. BASF The 2021 […] Read more


As much as possible, prevent the spread of disease by reducing movement of soil between fields.

How to prevent, detect and manage aphanomyces

Q & A with an expert

Q: I’m hearing more about aphanomyces. How can I prevent the disease from becoming a problem on my farm? A: Aphanomyces is a serious soil-borne disease of peas and lentils that is becoming increasingly widespread in Western Canada. Aphanomyces euteiches is a root rot pathogen that thrives under wet conditions. Symptoms are often first detected […] Read more

In addition to yield potential and pod integrity, consider herbicide- resistance traits when choosing canola varieties for your farm.

Consider herbicide-resistance traits when choosing canola varieties

Q & A with an expert

[UPDATED: Jan. 14, 2021] Q: Should weed populations in my field affect my canola decision? A: When selecting canola varieties for your operation in 2021, yield potential and pod integrity are front of mind. However, different varieties utilize different herbicide-resistance traits, and this, too, should be considered. Canola varieties utilizing glufosinate (LibertyLink or LL), glyphosate […] Read more


Pea yields are challenged by disease, specifically with aphanomyces, which is a soil-borne disease that has long life in the soil. The creation of a resistant variety would be a game changer in the pea seed market.

Farmers’ needs drive variety trends

Q & A with an expert

Q: What makes the biggest little seed on the block? A: New grain varieties are constantly entering the marketplace. These varieties bring new innovations including updated disease resistance and yield improvements. But what makes certain varieties stand out over others and their names well known? It is the balance of all desired traits into varieties […] Read more

New varieties can exhibit agronomic traits that were not previously available. This includes varieties that mature quickly, stand better, improve grade or quality, and allow for ease of harvest under more intensive management practices leading to higher yields.

New seed varieties may offer advantages

Q & A with an expert

Q: I am happy with the variety I am currently growing — why change? A: New seed varieties come to market every year; some with much anticipation and others with very little fanfare. On-farm performance of these varieties does not come from popularity or marketing campaigns. This can make it difficult for producers to identify […] Read more


Should you convert some farm acres to straight cut?

Q & A with an expert

Q: Is straight cutting canola a good fit for my farm? A: Recently, there has been more discussion around straight cutting and harvest management of canola. New advancements in genetics that increase the integrity of the pod and greater focus on selecting hybrids that have characteristics that make them more suitable to a straight cut […] Read more

Three situations where an in-crop nitrogen application may be worthwhile

Q & A with an expert

Q: When should I consider an “in-crop” application of nitrogen? A: Under the arid environment of the Canadian Prairies, splitting nitrogen applications in annual crops (e.g. applying 70 per cent of the nitrogen at time of seeding and top dressing the balance during the vegetative stage) rarely provides an agronomic benefit over applying all the […] Read more