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Potato plants growing in a field

Seeding Update — Ontario

There are now about 550 acres of of processing and table potatoes have been planted in the Leamington area in Ontario, according to Mark VanOostrum, field supply manager with Beeton, Ont.-based WD Potato Ltd. Growers in the Delhi area started planting this week; only a few acres are in the ground so far, Eugenia Banks, a potato specialist with the Ontario Potato Board, says in an email. She expects there should be…

Alliston potato variety

New Varieties Roundup

The latest and most innovative potato varieties available across Canada —which may just put your old favourites out to pasture. Potato breeding in Canada is booming, and to keep our readers abreast of new developments, we reached out to the leading firms and organizations across the country to find out all about their latest and most innovative varieties. Without further ado, here is the new tuber roundup from coast to coast. HZPC…

Potato plants in a row in a field

Seeding Update — Ontario Potato Planting Starts

Potato planting across southern Ontario has began within the last few weeks, Eugenia Banks, a potato specialist with the Ontario Potato Board, says in an email. There has already been 130 acres of potatoes planted in the Lemington area, according to Mark VanOostrum, Banks notes. The area received two inches of rain last weekend, which stalled planting for a few days. Planting started this week at Whites Potato Farm located near Vanessa,…

Nurse Crops in Potato Production

As with any field crop, young potato plants face many threats. Erosion, wind, drought and competition from weeds are a few of the factors that can impede the plants’ optimal growth. This is why a team at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) in the Maritimes has been looking into nurse crops — what they describe as fast-growing companion crops planted during the potato-growing season that help draw water to root systems, provide…

Hemp in the Rotation?

Potato farmers are always keen to include lucrative new crops in the rotation, and various groups in New Brunswick are currently looking into the suitability of hemp. To start examining that possibility and all other economic growth opportunities related to hemp, the leaders at the New Brunswick Department of Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries put out a request for proposals (RFP), explains Kevin McCully, the department’s provincial director of agriculture. “We awarded the contract…

The Ins and Outs of Potato Yield Monitoring

Bill Menkveld, vice-president of sales and marketing for Greentronics, has never met a grower who isn’t interested in yield maps. He says producers are often surprised by the results. “Growers are always amazed to see how much yield changes across a field. It’s not uncommon to see yields vary by a factor of 100 or 200 per cent,” he says. Yield monitors provide information about crops and production practices and are designed…

Alberta Potato Crop Production Report Oct. 8

The provincial average yields for potatoes on dryland and irrigated fields are estimated at 13.9 and 17.8 tons per acre, respectively. Region One: Southern (Strathmore, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Foremost) About 85 per cent of potatoes have been harvested, with yields on dryland and irrigated fields at 10 and 17.8 tons per acre, respectively Region Two: Central (Rimbey, Airdrie, Coronation, Oyen) About 90 per cent of potatoes have been harvested, with dryland yield…

Pile of potatoes

Manitoba Crop Production Report Oct. 11

Again, the rains in the week (Tuesday, Oct. 1 to Monday, Oct. 7) were extensive in distribution in the province, but slightly less than last week. The weather station sites recorded 1/2” to 3/4” rainfall.  The air temperatures have generally cooled down, while overnight below freezing temperatures have started. The western areas of the province have received close to 140+ per cent of the normal rainfall. Soils are now saturated. The maps below…

Ontario Crop Production Update Oct. 11

Sunny, balmy weather this week allowed growers to make lots of progress with the harvest.  Many growers have finished digging. According to Mark VanOostrum, 80 per cent of the chipping crop has been dug.  The size profile is better than expected, and the quality is very good.  Rainfall was below average in June, July and August in the Alliston area, which resulted in poor crops in non-irrigated fields. I visited P &…

What To Do When Frost Hits

When a pre-harvest hard frost hits — a temperature of -2.22 C or below — growers are faced with some thorny challenges. While a light frost may only damage the tubers in the top part of the hill, a severe frost can take out much more. There has been early frost three out of the last 10 years in the Maritimes, and outof those incidents, last year was the worst for frost-damaged…

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