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Canola Emergence

Farming Smarter Project

Project Lead: Dr. Robert Blackshaw, AAFC 

Timeline: 2009 – 2012


Canola emergence is often only 40-70% of planted seed. Slow seeding speeds (4 mph) may increase canola emergence, but farmers need to seed large areas in a short time


To determine how important seeding speed, seeding depth, and opener type are on canola emergence


Collaborators: Blaine Metzger, AG Tech Centre; Farming Smarter 

newly emerged canola

Locations: Lethbridge & Lacombe, AB; Scott & Indian Head, Sask.

Established experiments on cereal stubble 2008-2010. Seeded two cultivars of canola at 150 seeds/m2 with knife openers at 2 depths (1 & 4 cm) driving two speeds (4 & 7 mph).


Opener type

  • No differences in canola emergence in 2011
  • Significant differences in 4 of 5 sites in 2012
  • Inconsistent results in terms of a superior opener
  • All openers usually performed well

Seeding speed (6 vs. 4 mph):

  • Reduced emergence in 20% of cases in 2011
  • Reduced emergence in 33% of cases in 2012

Read/download report 
AAFC Canola-Emergence

Throughout the project, we saw a general trend of reduced canola emergence with higher seeding speeds in Alberta. 13 per cent of farms in 2011 and 25 per cent of farms in 2012 had reduced emergence with higher speeds in Saskatchewan. Excellent soil moisture may have been the great equalizer in these studies.


Canola Council of Canada


Manitoba Canola GrowersSask Canola      






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