When it comes to assessing canola maturity at this time of eyar, it can be tricky to see what’s what, especially when it comes to a thick canola crop.
In this Canola School episode, Keith Gabert, agronomy specialist with the Canola Council of Canada, shares a tip for finding the main stem — a trick which he refers to as “following the smooth side.”
“So if you take a look at a branch on canola, you’ll notice it’s got a bit of a collar. So if that were a tree, we’d call it a collar for pruning. However, the other side is smooth, the stem has grown normally there. And if you run your finger down this canola plant, and follow the smooth side, you’ll eventually get all the way up and come to a section of the plant that doesn’t have a branch or colour, and that’s the first flowering portion of the stem, or the main stem,” explains Gabert.
So why’s it important to find the main stem? It’s where you start looking for seed colour change to assess maturity for swathing or harvest.
To see the full demonstration, check out this Canola School video, filmed at Making the Grade in Olds, Alberta: