Are you itching to try a novel crop in your rotations? Maybe
a little something to boost profits in these turbulent market times?
While Farming Smarter doesn’t have definitive answers from year two of its study, Research Manager Mike Gretzinger can offer some insights from the 2019 season.
“To recap we had the following: Barley, canola, corn,
drybean, durum, hemp, pea, quinoa, wheat in a huge rotation block. In 2018, we
planted the blocks in north/south plots. In 2019, we planted the blocks in
east/west in plots effectively planting each crop into the residue of every
crop from the year before,” he explains.
“I don’t yet have all the yield data. The grain corn is
still in the field.”
important to point out that this study is also taking place in central and
northern Alberta and Indian Head, Saskatchewan. All locations just came through
season two of a four-year study. This means it’s early to offer definitive
That said, Gretzinger saw some promising trends.
“Everything except quinoa looked good after dry beans. If
disease isn’t an issue, the cereals look like the best all-purpose residue
crop. We didn’t see the best results following the cereals like pulses, but we
certainly didn’t see the worst results either. There’s a reason why generally
try to seed our research plots into wheat whenever possible. They offer low
residue/trash issues; easy to manage volunteers; decent fertility and good
uniformity for trials. We also tend to prefer cereals for crops like hemp and
quinoa because usually grassy herbicides are safest on a specialty broadleaf
crops,” he says.
Some challenges also caught his eye. For example, hemp volunteers lived up their name weed.
“Hemp control in peas was an issue. We’re used to spraying
Odyssey, but the hemp variety (Katani) was quite tolerant of the Imazamox. A
better choice next year will be Viper as the Bentanon will kill off hemp when
“It was difficult to time the preseed burn off and seeding
for quinoa. We had no weed control options (but we were expecting that).
Volunteer canola was a big issue in those plots because we didn’t get the
normal flush of weeds to spray at the burn down timing,” he says.
Some of the affects visible in 2019 included
Gretzinger wraps up by explaining, “We expected crop residue
to be a bigger deal. There were definitely some stand reductions on the corn
and hemp, but we didn’t have hair-pinning and trash buildup issues with our
seeders (Monosem and air drill with pillar laser disc-hoe). We expected more
herbicide residue issues (like canola on peas) but our clay-loam soils and
partial irrigation really help buffer against that.”
Gretzinger will present this project at the Farming Smarter
conference in December when all the technicians have more data crunched from the various locations. Also,
there are two more years of learning to go into this project, so watch for
updates in the coming years.
Created February 13, 2020 | Category: field studies