With disappointing prices for cereal grains, many producers in the prime canola growing regions are struggling with whether to tighten their canola rotations. Some producers grow canola every fourth year and that would be in line with recommended agronomic practices. Other producers have a third of their acres in canola each year. Some producers have half of their acres in canola and a few producers actually grow some canola on canola stubble. With canola returns likely to be substantially higher than wheat, barley or oats, there’s a strong incentive to throw agronomic guidelines out the window. As producers tighten their canola rotations, are they flirting with more disease issues? Clubroot in Alberta has been a major scare for the industry. As well, there are worries that more virulent strains of blackleg will be promoted. Canola breeding was able to respond quite quickly with varieties that have resistance to clubroot and so far blackleg resistance has held. Producers who have followed recommended rotational guidelines have watched their neighbours tighten rotations without many adverse effects. Expect more producers to take that path this year. I’m Kevin Hursh.
If you have questions about crop rotation, ask a DynAgra Agronomist for answers. 1-800-941-4811 or visit www.dynagra.com.