Prairies Featured Articles

Better Farming will publish nine editions of its Prairies magazine in 2020. After publishing each edition, we share a feature article online. Each Better Farming Prairies magazine includes much more content – you won’t want to miss it. If you don’t receive the print edition of Better Farming Prairies, but you enjoy reading the articles below, be sure to subscribe to the magazine!

More drought mitigation measures

‘Mother Nature Always bats last.’

By Taryn Milton

Farmers in some areas of Western Canada experienced dry conditions in 2020, and in the spring of 2021, the southern parts of both Manitoba and Saskatchewan were very dry.

Winter field in the prairies at sunrise
    mysticenergy/iStock/Getty Images Plus photo

Identify pests in the field

Before they become a problem.

By Michelle Jones

Insects are a pest that crop farmers deal with every year. And while pest varieties can change from year to year depending on a number of factors, the Prairies have some pests that farmers are almost always certain to deal with. Better Farming connects with some industry experts about the most common pests on the Prairies, how they affect crops and how they can be controlled.

What’s driving change in sprayer technology?

Equipment reps share new advancements that will benefit operators and yields.

by Taryn Milton

Sprayers are an important piece of equipment in a farmer’s lineup of machinery. But they were not always considered as essential as they are now.

Gender roles: where are we now?

Is today’s agricultural industry better for women than it was 40 years ago?

by Taryn Milton

Women have always been a part of agriculture.

In a general sense and in the traditional role of farm wife, they worked hard to keep operations moving through the years.

Today, women are no longer solely wives of farmers. They are agronomists, veterinarians, presidents of ag companies and farmers themselves.

Get a jump on weeds

What options are available for producers to manage problematic weeds?

by Taryn Milton

One of the top items on a producer’s to-do list this planting season may be to review which weeds they need to battle this year.

Depending on the province and soil zone you’re in, the weeds that you’ll encounter this year can vary. An effective way to get a jump on managing your weed situation is to assess, plan, implement and evaluate, says Rory Cranston.

Pests to watch in 2021

Each province has its own unique pest pressures, but some are proving to be universal problems across the Prairies.

by Taryn Milton

As growers in Western Canada prepare for the upcoming planting season, it’s time to start thinking about what pests you might be dealing with this year.

From cutworms to flea beetles, grasshoppers to wheat stem sawfly, growers in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta saw a variety of pests in 2020 that can cause problems for this upcoming year.

Farmland ownership: more farms in fewer hands

Is there equality among prairie producers?

By Taryn Milton

Western Canada is celebrated as the breadbasket of Canada, with more than 70 per cent of the country’s farmland within Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

But who really owns most of this land? And how is this changing?

In November, the Manitoba office of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) published a report titled Concentration Matters: Farmland Inequality on the Prairies.

How to make fertilizer recommendations

Learn about the key considerations you should keep in mind.

By Patrick Lynch

How do you decide which fertilizer you use? Do you use the same as last year? Do you ask your dealer for suggestions on what you should apply? Or do you use a soil test and get help from a certified crop advisor or other competent agronomy person?

How to beef up cattle nutrition in the winter

Planning for your winter nutrition program each year can help improve overall herd health for years to come

by Taryn Milton

For cattle producers, nutrition is important all year long, however, the winter months become a critical time for ensuring animals receive enough feed and minerals, especially cows calving in the spring.

The best way to ensure you have a successful winter leading into calving season is to have a plan.