GFM Network News


Bruce Anderson of the University of Nebraska runs attendees through strategies to “drought-proof” pasture during the Holland Beef and Forage Days in mid-January.

Looking for legumes

Experts are pitching pasture seeded with legumes as one strategy to limit drought impact, but there are a few things to keep in mind

Producers looking to buffer against feed issues may want to add some legumes in their pasture mix. The concept has been highlighted more than once this seminar season as speakers ponder how to “drought-proof” Manitoba’s feed supply in light of two years of dry temperatures and a significantly short forage harvest in 2018. Bruce Anderson

Hemp underseeded with clover.

Keeping hemp company

Studying ways to maximize agricultural potential by underseeding hemp crops

One Manitoba agriculture research group is trying a few new things with hemp that involve the crop sharing the land. In 2017 and 2018, the Westman Agricultural Diversification Organization (WADO) conducted a study on relay and intercropping with hemp. With most of the data in from that two-year study, WADO’s Scott Chalmers spoke to an


Manitoba cattle producers fear they’ll be sending more stock than usual to auction this fall as a feed shortfall looms.

Dry weather forecasts a season of hard choices

With pastures burning up and the forage harvest a fraction of normal, cattle producers are searching for affordable feed alternatives while considering how many cattle they must sell

Mike Duguid knew it would be a tough year for feed in the spring while he was assessing the winterkill in his alfalfa and poor pasture growth on his Interlake farm. “Some of the grasses had windburn and there was no moisture,” the Camp Morton-area producer said. “Lots of grasses require more moisture than southern

Manitoba’s hay crop has rebounded, but not fully recovered, from a slow start to the season.

Spring forage woes linger for first cut

Producers were glad to see forage jump in June, but many first-cut reports are still coming up short

Manitoba’s first forage cut is still showing the signs of a slow start this spring. The Manitoba Forage and Grassland Association observed lower alfalfa yields compared to last year in some regions. John McGregor, co-ordinator for the MFGA Green Gold program, says stands in eastern Manitoba were three inches shorter on average, coming in at

Over the weekend alfalfa has grown 2 inches in most fields and all fields are now in the early to late flowering stage.

Alfalfa in early to late-flowering stage

Forage and grassland conditions for Eastern/Interlake and Western/Central Manitoba as of June 11

This is the final report for the Green Gold program for 2018. With all fields now flowering quality has dropped very quickly. There are no samples for the Interlake for this report. Green Gold Report for Eastern/Interlake, June 11 Green Gold Report for Western/Central, June 11 This is the final release for the 2018 Optimum


Alfalfa flowering at Winkler, Man.

‘Hay Day’ arrives for forage growers in WestMan

Forage and grassland conditions for Western/Central Manitoba as of June 6

Alfalfa is advancing very quickly in most of the West/Central area and is at or getting close to the optimum stage for dairy quality forage. Reports this morning still has alfalfa growing at a rate of one inch per day or more. Green Gold Report for Western/Central, June 4 This is the fifth release for


Some fields in eastern Manitoba are showing signs of alfalfa weevil damage.

Fair weather sees good forage growth, alfalfa weevils on the scene

Forage and grassland conditions for Eastern Manitoba/Interlake and Western Manitoba/Central as of May 30 – 31

Fields in the Western area received some welcome rains with reports in the 2 inch range as of May 30. Central Manitoba reported only trace amounts of precipitation. Fields in Southeast Manitoba received around 7 mm while the Interlake received as much as 14 mm. Fields in the East that saw 3-4 inches of growth


Rain, warm temperatures spur good alfalfa growth

Forage and grassland conditions for Eastern Manitoba/Interlake as of May 24

Fields throughout the southeast experienced very little winter kill even though soil temperature in the southeast were getting down to the critical temperatures of -12 C. This may in part be due to were the weather stations are located and that many of the fields in the area had considerable stubble left from last fall.

Forage producers had their fingers crossed for rain last week, but the promised storms missed a range of farmers still looking for moisture.

Concern raised over flagging forage

Manitoba’s dry spell needs to break soon, or it could mean bad news for forage crops in the west. For some winterkilled crops, though, it’s already too late

Forage crops are off to a rough start. Producers and provincial experts say forages got a double hit this spring, with strained crops failing to survive the winter while those that made it through still struggle with slow growth. Ken Harms, who produces hay near Snowflake, says subpar stands in his area actually ran into