GFM Network News

Hay shortage could make for difficult winter

Reading Time: 2 minutes CNS Canada — Many cattle producers looking for local feed this winter might have a difficult time, according to a Saskatchewan provincial forage specialist. However, producers further north in the grey and black soil zones, and those in Alberta producing high-quality feed for export, saw near-record hay production. Terry Kowalchuk of Saskatchewan Agriculture in Regina […] Read more

Saskatchewan offers provincial pasture leases to patron groups

Reading Time: 2 minutes Cattle producers using provincial pastures heading into the final three years of the Saskatchewan Pastures Program (SPP) will get the first chance at leasing them. The province announced in March it would wind down the SPP, kicking off a public consultation process. Based on those consultations, the province confirmed Thursday it will grant the 50 […] Read more

Deciding on cover crop blends

Figuring out what to use in a cover crop blend can be an intimidating process. What species to use? What seeding rate? When should they be seeded? All would influence how the blend would look, work, and the success of it. There is some science involved, but making it work is as much art as[...]
Read more

The forage value of cover crops

Western research shows cover crops can be worth their weight for grazing or even baling

Reading Time: 6 minutes Extended drought has forced many farmers across Eastern Canada to seek alternate feed sources for the coming winter. It’s even got some producers thinking about the cover crops on their farm and on neighbouring farms. The growing popularity of cover crops among grain farmers may have come at just the right time for cattle farmers[...]
Read more

Six limiting factors in your soil that will make or break your operation

Without these six key ingredients, your soil — and your farm — could be in trouble

Farms and grazing operations — organic or otherwise — are only as good as their worst resource, according to Oregon-based grazier Abe Collins. “Soil is our primary infrastructure on the farm,” said Collins, who spoke at the recent Organic Alberta conference. “Biologically, chemically, and physically, you need to be looking at the limiting factors in[...]
Read more

In many grasslands, including those of Western Canada, moderate grazing actually boosts overall plant diversity.

Making hay of environmental goods and services

Researchers wrestle with turning an abstract concept into concrete profits for producers

Reading Time: 5 minutes If you were to ask most cattle producers about the goods and services their grasslands provide, it might seem like an obvious question. Most would say that quality forage promotes the health of their cattle, provides high-quality protein and boosts their bottom line. Others might talk about how their grazing practices promote biodiversity and overall[...]
Read more

Home on the range

So you think you could ranch in this almost forgotten corner of Saskatchewan?

Reading Time: 14 minutes It’s on the network of narrow highways that snake through the rolling, grass-covered hills of southwestern Saskatchewan that you first notice the quiet. You can drive for 50 miles at a time and only see the occasional farmyard off in the distance. In contrast to the busy Trans-Canada Highway to the north with its continuous[...]
Read more

Sask. to open protected grasslands for grazing

Reading Time: 2 minutes Crown-held native prairie and other grasslands held for wildlife conservation in Saskatchewan will be opened up to ranchers needing grazing land for cattle in dry areas. Environment Minister Herb Cox announced Tuesday the province will make about 90,000 acres of Fish and Wildlife Development Fund (FWDF) land available to cattle producers. The same grazing lease[...]
Read more

Clayton Robins (r), with son Quinn and father Brian, travelled to 11 countries as part of the Nuffield Scholarship program.

Nuffield scholar focuses on energy-dense forages

Study will explore using energy-dense perennial forages as annuals 

Reading Time: 2 minutes One learns fairly quickly upon first meeting him that Clayton Robins is a bundle-of-energy person. So it comes as no surprise that the 2013 Nuffield Scholar has actually travelled the world to learn more about energy. Energy-dense forages, that is. “Every other country I visited looks at sugars in forages except here in North America,”[...]
Read more