Tag: Shane Thomas

3 Tips for Headache-Free Tank Mixing

Tank mixing crop protection products has been an important practice for western Canadian agriculture for a very long time; it allows us to manage weed resistance, control grassy and broadleaf weeds in an efficient one-pass system, and possibly manage nutrition and disease at the same time. The downside is that the chemistries sometimes can be… Read more »

Assessing the Risk of an Early Season Frost

This spring has started off much cooler than usual across much of Western Canada, with forecasts trending towards more cool temperatures. With these cool temperatures comes the risk of frost injury once crops have emerged, but just because a frost occurs does that mean you have to re-seed? Where should you look first? There are… Read more »

How to Achieve A Smokin’ Hot Pre-Seed Burn-Down

A pre-seed burn down is often the first pass on a field. Some may overlook the importance of getting a strong burn-down, but in reality it can be a huge detriment if some components get overlooked. And if you’re going to do a job, you should do it well. Why does a pre-seed burn-down matter?… Read more »

4 Ways to Achieve a Vigourous Crop

As seeding approaches, one of the most common topics I hear discussed is vigour.  A vigourous plant stand comes from a healthy seed that is out of the ground and competing in a timely fashion. This can mean fewer days to maturity, quicker ground cover, better weed competition, a more robust rooting system better able… Read more »

Field Trials: What to Measure Beyond Yield Response

With the 2014 growing season fast approaching (we hope) you are probably wrapping up your seeding and input plans and getting antsy to get into the field. As cropping plans start to fall into place, the logical next step for many is to decide on which products or practices to test out to measure their… Read more »

Copper — The Best Thing for Wheat Since Sliced Bread?

By Shane Thomas Plant nutrients are always big driving factors in how our crops yield, with macronutrients getting the majority of the attention. However, micronutrients can be limiting factors in a lot of our cropping systems, especially for those really pushing yield with intense management. One micronutrient that gets discussed a lot is copper. This… Read more »

Potassium: The Forgotten Macronutrient

Nitrogen and phosphorus get all the glory when it comes to the macronutrients. But there are two others in the NPKS mix, you know. The third most important nutrient, potassium, often gets thrown by the wayside and only seems to come up when there is a market discussion on Potash Corp or Russia’s Uralkali. There… Read more »

8 Must-Haves in Your Crop Scouting Kit

I can’t stress enough the importance of having your own two feet in the field to see what the heck is going on in your crops. Too often there is far more that we can bring to the field to help us identify exactly what is occurring, but the lack of a few simple tools… Read more »

3 Things To Consider Before Tightening Canola Rotations

Earlier this month, the Canola Council of Canada rolled out its vision for the canola industry over the next decade or so. While the plan includes growth of the domestic and export markets, the plan has also sparked some discussion on tightening canola rotations. The Canola Council has shifted its canola rotation stance slightly —… Read more »

New Seed Treatment Options for 2014

As we gear up for the busy farm meeting season, farmers can be sure to learn about a few new product releases from their favourite crop protection company. 2014 appears to be no different with many new options coming out for growers in the area of seed treatments. Earlier in 2013, I was at a… Read more »

Don’t Let a Lack of Sulfur Limit Canola Yield & Impact Plant Health

When I first started working in the agriculture industry I spent the entire month of May blending fertilizer. At this point in time when a grower came in and asked for a “34-17-0” blend, I was a pretty happy guy. It meant less work and less chance of screwing up, win-win for me as an… Read more »

Thinking Micros? Think Fertilizer Impregnation Technology

No, you didn’t read that title wrong — fertilizer impregnation is a real thing. In fact, it isn’t even a new concept and many will have heard of this before but likely in the context of added pesticide products to fertilizer prills. The type of impregnation I want to talk about today is impregnating fertilizer… Read more »

Tissue Testing: The Next Step in Fertility Management

Fall and early winter are a great time for testing soil and seed and analyzing those results, to begin planning for the next growing season. Often, we do all of this planning but then never take the time during the year to check and see if we could be doing better or if the plan… Read more »

Low Protein Impacts More Than Just Premium Spreads

The 2013 growing season was one of the most productive on record for Western Canada. There were big crops of everything from peas, to canola, to cereals. Durum and hard red spring wheat crops were huge on many farms. While this is good news for farmers (as long as they can get the crop moved),… Read more »

Can Plant Growth Regulators Solve Lodging Problems?

2013 was a big year for western Canadian cereal crops, and with big yield can come big problems with toppling over. Lodging risk is a complicated mixture of genetics, a nutrient imbalance, nutrient deficiency, improper seeding rate or a combination of these factors. Having all those things in check is key, but if you still… Read more »