The development of high value specialty crops is crucial for a diversified
and robust agricultural industry in Canada. It is very important for on-farm
profitability and is a key driver for value added industries. With
strong developing markets, it is vastly important that growers can meet
the demands by seamlessly integrating these crops into traditional crop
rotations. We propose to identify the best fit of novel crops into
standard crop sequences specific for three agro-climatic zones including
southern portion of the province (on irrigated land), central Alberta and
the Peace Country. Using a strip design approach this four year study
will involve eight crops including a core set of staple crops (wheat,
barley, canola, pea) and selected novel crops (i.e. hemp, quinoa, dry
beans, soybean, flax, corn) gaining popularity among Alberta growers.
Due to significant climatic differences among the locations selection of
novel crops will be site-specific to address inquiries extended by the
local area growers. As a result, 64 crop sequence combinations will be
evaluated. Hence, our research is designed to develop a decision
making tool for growers selecting the best stubbles to grow specific
crops on and help to avoid stubbles that are particularly negative for
yield and quality of the subsequent crop. Consequently, it will diminish
the risk of crop failure due to inadequate management of crops caused
by the lack of knowledge regarding novel crop production.
Locations: Lethbridge, Vegreville, Falher and Indian Head, SK.
This project will focus on field trials designed to determine the effects of various crops in rotations using a set of zone specific staple crops and selected novel crops. This information will help producers make decisions on where to fit novel crops into crop rotations. The project includes trials executed at four locations over four growing seasons aimed at maximizing practical information regarding crop performance in different agro-ecozones.
We will use a strip design approach for this study, involving eight crops including a core set of staple cops (wheat, barley, canola, pea) and selected novel crops (hemp, quinoa, dry beans, soybean, flax, corn) gaining popularity among Alberta growers. Since there is significant climate differences among the locations, novel crops will be site specific.
The design will result in 256 plots (8 proceeding crops x 8 crops x 4reps) in Year B. Each plot will be 64 m2 (16m x 4m) or 32m2 if only shorter strips are possible. To avoid inter-plot interference only central portion of each plot (48 or 24m2) will be harvested for yield quantification.
Year A will be seeded in 2018, 2019 and 2020 in a new site at each of the four locations. Year B will be seeded in 2019, 2020 and 2021 on the Year A site from the previous year.
Such approach will generate 64 crop sequence combinations. These are just two year sequences. Therefore, this experiment will be conducted three times at each of the four locations providing us with a potential of 12 station-year of data.
Will be published after 3 years of data in 2022.
Check back in winter 2020 for this section
High Value Study Broke Ground This Year