This study is still in progress, but aims to demonstrate how different seeding dates and rates can improve canola yield and quality and to discuss and show methods to control flea beetles.
Early seeding typically results in better yielding crops, especially for canola, barley, wheat, peas and oats (Weir, 2019). But not all crops can be seeded early. In 2022, some parts of Saskatchewan were seeded late due to excess spring precipitation, and while other parts of the province could seed early, but they struggled with a moisture deficit (Warner, 2022). Many producers had to choose between early seeding, reseeding and late seeding their canola crops. However, due to the high cost of inputs, some producers may be hesitant to seed earlier.
This study will demonstrate how a canola crop performs with different seeding dates. It will also incorporate two different seeding rates, as seeding rate may reduce the severity of risks associated with seeding too early or too late.
The main two objectives of this demonstrative study are:
1. Demonstrate how different seeding dates and rates can improve canola yield and quality
2. Provide a backdrop to discuss methods of flea beetle control and proper scouting techniques at Field Days and/or extension activities.
While both of these methods were included in a 2019 ADOPT study, the canola used was untreated, which is not common practice. There were also only two different seeding dates and the higher seeding rate was not successfully established.
Potential outcomes and impact
Information from this demo will help producers make a more informed decision about the most ideal time to seed canola in a given year, across different regions of the province. It could also demonstrate a low-cost method to increasing canola yields.
The second objectives of this demonstration will provide the opportunity to discuss and show methods to control flea beetles. Regardless of wet or dry conditions, a common issue throughout Saskatchewan in 2022 was flea beetle pressure (Warner, 2022). While early seeding can help reduce crop damage from flea beetles, sometimes the opposite is observed due to the species present and timing of arrival. Seeding rate can also be beneficial for flea beetle control.