Category: Research

Wheat School: What it takes to keep Canada at the cutting edge of wheat breeding

In any industry, you can go backwards by merely standing still. In research, even something as traditional as wheat research, the same is true. You have to keep moving forward or other players will pass you and your innovations will be obsolete before they even get out of the laboratory. Luckily for Canadian farmers, there… Read more »

Consumers, farmers, and industry all benefit from a trusted regulatory system

Regulations are often disliked by by both producers and consumers. Producers think there is too much red tape and consumers think regulators are too accommodating to business. But when the regulatory system works – when it trusted and predictable – everyone benefits. The recent Canola Discovery Forum at Banff, Alta., brought together a host of… Read more »

From lab to land: A look inside Syngenta’s Seedcare Institute

It’s not often a company opens the doors to its multi-million dollar seed research centre, so when you get the chance for a tour, you take it. Last month, Syngenta held its media summit which wrapped up by taking both Canadian and American agricultural journalists on a trip to Stanton, Minnesota, to check out their… Read more »

Wheat School: Wheat genome map a vital new tool, but scientists are still the heart of wheat breeding

Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (AAFC) at Lethbridge, Alta., is a big sprawling facility that does a wide variety of research. That being said, they are particularly known for their wheat research, and for good reason. They do innovative work, and the research team has bred many stalwart wheat varieties for Canadian farmers. In this episode… Read more »

Resistance Management School: Watch out for waterhemp

Earlier this year, Dr. Peter Sikkema, professor with the University of Guelph and his research team confirmed Group 14 resistance in waterhemp at multiple locations in Ontario. Sikkema’s research team, including graduate student Lauren Benoit, has also confirmed waterhemp with cross-resistance to Groups 2, 5, and 9, as well as 14. In this episode of the Resistance Management… Read more »

Non-hybrids with hybrid vigour just one goal of biotech research

The joke in Saskatoon is that you come for the weather, but stay because you can’t get a flight out. Kidding aside, Saskatoon is actually a hub of biotech research and development with findings and products with the potential to benefit farmers all over the world. Because of this, Global Biotech Week is an event… Read more »

Restoring eroded knolls has huge potential to boost yield

Landscape restoration: do you do it? You might want to think about doing it, because chances are you’re losing yield if you don’t, according to Marla Riekman, land management specialist with Manitoba Agriculture. In the simplest terms, landscape restoration is moving soil back from where it came from. When growers use tillage year after year,… Read more »

Building the case for subsurface drip irrigation

There’s no messing around when the lead researcher of the subsurface drip irrigation (SDI) system at Lethbridge College asks for soil for her project. Bins measuring six by three metres and one metre deep were filled with three different, but common topsoil types found in southern Alberta. They include Grassy Lake sand, Lomond loam and Coaldale clay… Read more »

Alberta and Saskatchewan wheat commissions announce $1.6 million in combined research funding

The provincial wheat grower commissions in Alberta and Saskatchewan have announced more than $1.6 million in combined funding over three years for over half a dozen wheat-related research projects. “These projects have the potential to bring major benefits to farmers across Western Canada,” notes Saskatchewan Wheat Development Commission chair Laura Reiter. “We’re proud to partner… Read more »

Wheat School: How do we fund wheat research?

Over the last decade, the average yield increase for corn tips the scale at five bushels per acre, per year. During the same period wheat yield gains have averaged a meagre one bushel per acre, per year. What is the future of wheat if it can’t match the yield gains of crops like corn and… Read more »

Ode to the plant breeder

Personally, I know that I lack the ability to focus on one thing for very long. I bounce from topic to topic every day as new issues develop and new questions arise. Authors commit months, or even years, to one subject when writing a book. Their ability to make that time commitment is so amazing… Read more »

Corn School: Does split nitrogen pay in Western Canada?

The practice of split-applying nitrogen through the growing season has been increasing throughout U.S. midwest corn states and in Eastern Canada. In Western Canada, about 20 percent of corn growers in Manitoba have adopted the in-season practice, according to newly-released results of a survey conducted by the Manitoba Corn Growers. In this episode of RealAgriculture… Read more »

Wheat School: Waxy wheat shines in droughty climes

Do wheat varieties with higher leaf wax levels perform better in dry, stressful growing conditions? That’s a question RealAgriculture agronomist Peter Johnson and C & M Seeds general manager Ellen Sparry tackle on this episode of the Wheat School as they tour C & M’s research site at the company’s Harriston, ON, location. Sparry notes that… Read more »

Drones could make crop research 10 times more efficient

Every farmer doesn’t need to own and operate a drone for UAV technology to have a positive impact on their farm. That’s the message Scott Ditschun shares with farmers when he discusses how Bayer CropScience is employing drones in its agronomic and product research. He says UAV technology could effectively increase Bayer’s field research efficiency by… Read more »

Will relay intercropping work in Ontario?

RealAgriculture agronomist Peter Johnson is keeping a close eye on relay intercropping trials planted in Ontario this summer. The objective of the research is to evaluate whether Ontario farmers could effectively plant soybeans into standing wheat versus double cropping soybeans that are planted after wheat is harvested. In this video, Johnson inspects an intercropping trial at… Read more »