Canola plant establishment meta-analysis

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Key Result

Canola plant populations (in farm field surveys completed during provincial weed surveys around the time of this analysis) were below the economically optimal canola densities of 62–73 plants/m2, considering average prices at the time of the analysis, seed size, and emergence rates.

Project Summary

This is the yield-by-seeding-rate graph based on Murray Hartman’s meta-analysis of more recent Western Canadian studies on hybrid canola. For each study included in the analysis, the top yield result is placed on the 100% line. From there, each plot result is converted to percentage of top yield for the site and placed on the graph as a single dot. The black curved line represents the typical yield results for each plant count. (50 plants per square metre is roughly five plants per square foot.) The blue lines on each side of the black are 95-per-cent confidence bands.

Canola is a significant crop in Canada, so when canola seed prices increased, many growers reduced their seeding rates and therefore produced lower plant densities. This increased interest in target plant densities for canola and reassessment of industry recommendations for economic optimal densities and seeding rates.

The objective of this meta-analysis was to evaluate the relationship between plant density and yield response of herbicide resistant hybrid canola grown in western Canada in multiples studies, as well as to determine optimal densities which are most economical for growers.

Farm field surveys completed during provincial weed surveys around the time of this analysis showed that plant populations were below the economically optimal canola densities of 62–73 plants mβˆ’2 considering average prices at the time of the analysis, seed size, and emergence rates. The results also emphasize the importance of an economical canola plant density as well as the need for tools to help growers make these canola seeding decisions.

For details, see the ‘Estimating the economic optimal target density of hybrid canola based on data from a western Canadian meta-analysis’ paper published on this research.