Category: Soil

RealAg Bookclub: The Soil Fixers with Harold Rudy

Much has changed on the Ontario soil conservation front since 1987. No-till farming has been firmly entrenched, most farms in the province now proudly tout their own Environmental Farm Plan, and soil health is recognized as key to a $13 billion food economy that fuels 800,000 jobs. It’s a 30-year journey that Harold Rudy captures… 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 »

Saskatchewan student’s research shines light on polycrops

This month, the University of Saskatchewan awarded more than $8 million towards research projects. Large amounts to the tune of $200K, even $375K surely grabbed most peoples attention, but my eyes shifted more towards Jacqueline Toews’s research. Toews has been awarded $17,500 in scholarship money to continue her research on the efficacy of grazing cattle on… Read more »

The SeedPod —Ep 16: Soil testing is step one in soil health management

When it comes to testing seed, you’re after many answers, but the bottom line is always “Is this seed fit for use?” When it comes to soil, you don’t have the choice on whether or not to use it — but you can use soil sampling and testing to inform your management and put a… Read more »

Forage specialist says to be cautious of nitrate accumulation

Unwanted snow that blanketed parts of Alberta and Saskatchewan in the month of September has left many farmers at a standstill near the more-than-halfway point of harvest for the year. According to Karin Lindquist, forage and beef specialist with Alberta Agriculture, the frost could be also be a concern for nitrate accumulation. “What happens is,… 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 »

John Deere rolls out ‘variable-intensity’ tillage tool

Adaptable is perhaps the best word to describe John Deere’s new variable-intensity tillage tool. Farmers hovered around the 2660VT at the Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa, this week as Jarred Karnei, Deere’s tactical marketing manager for tillage equipment, demonstrated many of the the tillage tool’s features. In the video below, Karnei explains that the key to the… Read more »

Early harvest means more opportunity to complete the fall task list

There has been a different feeling to the air over the last week. The days are getting shorter, the evenings a little cooler, and even the whisper of frost has been heard. That’s the mood as Shaun Haney and Trish Meyers compare notes about changing seasons and what makes it onto the fall ‘to do’… Read more »

Manitoba farmers take home TESA environmental award at CBIC

Circle H Farms took home the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association’s The Environmental Stewardship Award (TESA) from the Canadian Beef Industry Conference (CBIC) in London, Ont. last week. Located near Brandon, Man., Brian and Sonja Harper were recognized for their work transforming their farm since acquiring the property in 1990. “What set the Harpers apart in their focus… Read more »

Early plant nutrition management: It’s not “just” vegetative growth

Mike Dolinski has seen a lot of things over the years as an entomologist and senior Agri-Trend coach. Opinions that come and go, scientific consensus that changes, and sometimes catchphrases that catch on, even if they are misleading. At the recent Sure Growth Technologies field day near Marchwell, Sask., Dolinski drew a bead on the… Read more »

City kids connect farmers to consumers in ‘Before the Plate’

What do you get when you connect two ‘city kid’ filmmakers, a world-class chef, and nine farmers and their families? You get Before The Plate, a genuine behind-the-kitchen-door, on-the-farm look at how food is produced in Canada, and the passion and commitment chefs and farmers apply to their craft. The driving force behind the film… Read more »

Do you know your cover crops?

Can you tell the difference between annual ryegrass and cereal rye? How about radish and kale? If you can’t, it’s time to bone up on your identification skills if you want to get serious about planting cover crops mixes on your farm, says Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs soil management specialist Anne… Read more »

Corn School: Aqua-Till trades coulter for water jet

Ever consider replacing your planter disc openers with high-pressured water jets? The concept is called aqua-till. The idea has been pioneered by the South Australian NoTill Farmers Association (SANTFA). Earlier this week, SANTFA research and development manager Greg Butler traveled north to Ontario to showcase the technology for farmers attending the annual FarmSmart Expo near… Read more »

Wheat School: ‘Real’ Wheat Farmers — Parkland Farms

Average yields of 110 to 115 bushels per acre on soil that is often more than 60 percent clay? That’s impressive. And that’s why Parkland Farms is featured on our latest episode of ‘Real’ Wheat Farmers. In this video, RealAgriculture agronomist Peter Johnson peppers Parkland Farms agronomist Clark Aitken with questions on how the Lambton… Read more »

Wheat School: Assessing the impact of drought in winter wheat

Much of Ontario’s winter wheat has fallen victim to hot, dry, June growing conditions, and yields will likely suffer, reports RealAgriculture agronomist Peter Johnson. On this episode of the Wheat School, Johnson describes how drought-like growing conditions that brought high temperatures (34 degree days, 24 degree nights) and high winds for the better part of a… Read more »