A number of products are being marketed to enhance the crops’ protection from environmental stresses such as frost. The Canola Council of Canada agronomists are not aware of any scientific research in western Canada to support such claims. Growers who are considering applying a product for such a purpose are encouraged to ask for scientific research data results to help with decision making. If growers do choose to use such a product, as with any other new product, start small on a limited number of acres and keep an untreated check strip for comparison. Conducting an on-farm experiment will help determine if the investment was economical.
Swathing prior to a frost is generally not a good strategy either unless adequate seed colour change has occurred. In order for a swathed crop to be protected from a frost, it must have been swathed long enough for sufficient dry down to occur prior to the frost event (typically at least three full days). Swathing too early, just to avoid the risk of frost, can often translate into yield and quality losses.
More information on how frost affects the maturing canola seed is available at the following link: