GFM Network News


It’s a crop with so much going for it. Camelina has a sought-after oil profile, it breaks up disease and insect cycles, plus it spreads the producer’s workload too.

Winter camelina showing promise

It can be straight cut, and flea beetles aren’t a problem

Reading Time: 5 minutes Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s camelina breeder Christina Eynck seeded a couple of winter camelina trials in Saskatoon late in the last third of September 2019. Then there was an early freeze-up. “The plants were only in the cotyledon stage, and very few of them had developed the first true leaves. We thought, ‘This is not […] Read more

Jitendra Paliwal adjusts the antennae on the 3D electromagnetic imaging system at the University of Manitoba’s grain storage research laboratory. The lab is embarking on a new project that will look at how laser biostimulation — which is used in human cosmetic surgery — could be deployed to reverse mechanical or insect damage on seed going into storage.

Options for monitoring grain bins

3D imaging and CO2 detection are offered as options for monitoring temperature and moisture

Reading Time: 4 minutes Bin monitoring has come a long way since probes on sticks and necessarily so — as the size of grain bins has grown, so has the value of their contents. One 10,000-bushel bin can surpass $100,000. Everyone has heard horror stories of entire bins ruined, but Joy Agnew, associate vice-president of applied research for Olds […] Read more


“The biggest take-away for me,” says farm-raised Nikki Tomoniko, “is that there is a place for someone with my skill set ... I’d never thought of farming as a career path.”

How Farmers Edge is turning youth into business leaders

Internship program pairs up youth and farm clients with company’s FarmCommand platform

Reading Time: 6 minutes Nikki Tomoniko never intended to work in agriculture. In the spring of 2018, the young Neepawa, Man. woman was looking for a summer job when a family friend mentioned Farmers Edge had a new internship program and was trying to find students for its Alberta office. Tomoniko was studying English and French at university and […] Read more

A Saskatchewan study compared vigour and yield performance of 48 lots of certified and farm-saved seed.

Choosing your seed. Certified or farm-saved?

There’s general agreement on the merits of certified seed, but a new study shows one isn’t extra yield

Reading Time: 5 minutes Does certified seed beat bin-run seed for yield? A 2004 survey of 800 Prairie growers indicated that 70 to 80 per cent of their cereal acres were seeded to farm-saved seed (FSS), which suggests they don’t think so. But while a recent two-year study indicates they’re right, that doesn’t mean certified seed doesn’t provide extra […] Read more


Adam and Meghan Gregory were succeeding on the farm and continuously improving its performance. Then they asked, is that good enough?

The next big step: mid-career mentorship

You’re already smart and dedicated, but is that really enough for today’s challenges?

Reading Time: 6 minutes When Adam Gregory signed up for LeaderShift’s year-long national farm leadership program, he didn’t anticipate waking up at the crack of dawn to do group yoga. “Some people were way out of their comfort zone,” Gregory laughs. “I’m open to trying anything, so it wasn’t a hurdle for me.” There’s more to LeaderShift’s program than […] Read more

Once pulled, clubroot-infected plants are best disposed of by burning.

Swift removal of infected plants key for clubroot control

You can kill the plant, but the pathogens remain to continue infecting the soil

Reading Time: 4 minutes A new study shows that even after a plant infected with clubroot has been killed with a herbicide and frozen to ensure all plant cells are dead, the pathogen survives and continues to mature. The study led by Mary Ruth McDonald, a professor of plant agriculture at the University of Guelph, and Agriculture Canada scientist […] Read more


Lodging presents a much higher risk of yield and quality reductions and economic losses if barley can’t be sold for malting.

PGRs for malting barley? Maybe

Research suggests plant growth regulators should be considered as a risk-management tool in fields with high yield potential

Reading Time: 4 minutes [UPDATED: April 12, 2021] Lodging is the enemy of barley producers, especially if they’re hoping for a malting premium. It’s prompted some producers to get out of barley altogether. Others are turning to plant growth regulators (PGRs) to help cut their losses. Sheri Strydhorst, a research scientist at the University of Alberta, says lodging is […] Read more

“Setting the next generation up so they have a financial stake in the farm helps feed the mentorship process. It’s so they understand the risks and the rewards of farming,” says Lance Stockbrugger.

Serious about mentoring

The idea of mentorship is catching fire in agriculture, with new programs popping up all the time. Should you sign on?

Reading Time: 8 minutes Lance Stockbrugger always knew he wanted to farm. “It was going to be my career,” he says. “It was just a matter of how I was going to get there.” When he was 11, Lance’s father was killed in a motor vehicle accident. The family — Lance, his mother and his three siblings — were […] Read more


Under dry conditions, black medic growth is limited, meaning it won’t compete with field crops for nutrients.

A cover crop ‘failure,’ but the story doesn’t end there

Black medic is a soil improver, and can be a good fit in situations where nitrogen is limited

Reading Time: 3 minutes A cover crop that self-seeds year after year, grows whenever environmental conditions are right and doesn’t compete with principal crops. Sounds like a dream, but it exists: it’s called black medic. It’s been planted in Western Canada since the 1990s, but it’s not widely used, and in fact “it’s kind of a failure,” says Martin […] Read more

The Thacker family (at back: Ute and Clint, at front: Lynn and Robin).

A place to do business

A farm office may be a profit-making next step for your farm, whether you’re specialized or commodity-based

Reading Time: 5 minutes It’s a familiar story. Almost 50 years ago, when Lynn and Ute Thacker started farming with Lynn’s brothers in Bow Island, Alta., their “office,” if you could call it that, was their kitchen table, and their filing system was a cardboard box. They were producing spearmint and then added dill and finally dry leaf and […] Read more