Canola School: Doing your own field trials through the Ultimate Canola Challenge
“What would happen if we bumped nitrogen rates up by 10 percent? Or vice versa? Should we apply boron? What about foliar product XYZ?…”
As a grower, you’re constantly considering different ideas on to get the best return on investment in a given crop, but with all the variables in farming, it’s often difficult to measure the impact of implementing these ideas.
To help growers conduct their own on-farm trials, the Canola Council of Canada’s agronomy team developed a series of protocols as part of the Ultimate Canola Challenge.
Now in its third year, the UCC helps growers implement a a more meaningul trial than a simple check strip, explains Nicole Philp, agronomy specialist with Canola Council, in this Canola School episode.
“A lot of guys will leave a check strip in the field and use that to make decisions on farm, but there are a couple more things that they can do to make a trial really successful and really meaningful. So what we’ve done is kind of put together a series of protocols that are available to anybody in the industry that wants to test anything that they want,” she explains.
It’s easy to get involved, and Philp says at the end of the day the sky is the limit as to what you can compare.
“What would be really nice is if they are going to be using the protocol for something then they might share the information back with us so that we can share that with the industry as well,” adds Philp. “That’s kind of why we are doing coordinated trials, so that we are ensuring we are getting the data back so that we can share with industry what we are learning.”
By no means do you have to be approached by the Canola Council to conduct your own trial, she notes: “I encourage you to download, take a look, plan them for next year, and hopefully you’ll be able to learn something on your farm.”
To learn more about the Ultimate Canola Challenge and some of the trials that have been done in the past, including boron and nitrogen comparisons, check out this video filmed at Ag In Motion near Langham, Saskatchewan.