Prairies Featured Articles

Better Farming publishes nine editions of its Prairies magazine each year. 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!

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.

Keys to your farm business goals

By setting SMART goals, producers can grow business success and realize personal satisfaction.

by Jackie Clark

At this time of year, many of us think about the future. As we move from one year to the next, our thoughts shift from the harvest season behind us to the opportunities available in the spring.

Often, people might take a moment to think of, or even record, a few resolutions for the year ahead.

Your goals can focus on the farm business but can also be personal or family-related.

Autonomous equipment continues to drive farming forward

From self-driving tractors to sensors on implements, we explore how autonomy is advancing the ag industry.

by Taryn Milton

The future is already here, when it comes to autonomous equipment. What remains to be seen is how we fulfill the promise of the technology – to make a farmer’s job easier and to improve efficiency and profitability.

So how do we get from here to there?

The Benefits & Limits of Business Risk Management Programs

Business risk management programs offered through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and provincial/territorial ministries need to change for participation to increase, ag industry leaders say.

by Taryn Milton

Farmers face many risks annually. Market volatility, unpredictable weather, high input costs and crop or animal disease are all factors that can shape yields or production levels.

Prep your 2021 crop plan

As growers develop their plans, industry experts reflect on the 2020 season and highlight new product offerings for 2021.

by Taryn Milton

The 2020 crop year taught us many lessons about canola and wheat. While we anticipated some challenges, like the continued rise in clubroot and fusarium pressure, other hurdles, like the surge in wireworm pressure, were unexpected.