Applied Research Analyst with Manitoba Agriculture, Scott Chalmers, is excited to see Westman area farmers and producers come together Tuesday, April 2nd for the Southwest Region Crop Day, to be held in Melita this year.

Chalmers is facilitator of the Westman Agricultural Diversification Organization (WADO) and the Tuesday crop day event.

The list of speakers and presentations is listed below, however Chalmers himself has a number of items he'll be sharing on, including results from last summer's test plots, a federal government study on soybeans and irrigation, lupines and more.

"First I'm going to speak on all the different locations we ran in 2023," he explains. "We had 7 locations around Melita, and we'll talk about some of the highlights of some of the sites."


"We're going to talk about the lupines that we grew, and we compared them to peas, for example," shares Chalmers. "So, we're going to talk about the yield, the maturity, the herbicide package and how they fared against peas in terms of protein."

Annual Forages:

"We'll talk about what works, what didn't, and why," he says. "And we'll also have a couple of intercrop annual forages, like peas and barley, or peas and oats. And we'll see how they fared. And actually, they did fairly well."


"We'll be looking at a flax seed treatment trial that we did in cooperation with MCA looking at various kinds of seed treatment on brown and yellow flax, and how that panned out."

Greenhouse Gas Projects:

"I'll give the listeners a little bit about what we're doing there, how we do it, and why it matters to them. And this could really affect their bottom line on their fertilizer efficiency, which is in the farmer's favor on this one."

"We're also doing a project on greenhouse gases in winter wheat, and we've got a current project here that farmers can see the data results, physically, so that they can understand really what these nitrification inhibitors that we can put on fertilizer do, and how responsive it is. Even just one week after application," he adds.

Dry Bean Nitrogen Management Projects:

"This is looking at inoculants vs using fertilizer. So, we're trying to save money on not using nitrogen fertilizers and try these inoculants that might help farmers fix their own nitrogen. But maybe we have to use a little bit of fertilizer to get the ball rolling too," says Chalmers.

Winter Wheat Fertility Project:

"This is looking at splitting nitrogen applications off in the Fall and then applying a broadcast application with nitrogen thickeners on them in spring. And we're trying to really find that sweet spot that really works good."

Irrigated Soybean Project:

"This is a federal project looking at various potential varieties of soybeans under irrigation and comparing them to dry land.  And it's not just about yield," he adds. "It's about protein because we're trying to understand the protein issue that Manitoba has, or Western Canada has, where we have low protein. But also, the amino acid profile is a little off and buyers just don't like that. So, we're trying to figure out what is going on there, and I've got lots of good data on that."

 Pea-Canola Intercrop Project:

"This project looked at forage peas, maple peas and field peas in production with canola.  And we got some amazing results with some of the yields coming out of that, especially with the forage peas, and the ease of harvest."

Intercropping Corn with Soybeans:

"I'll be talking a little bit more about corn intercrops that we have with soybeans, where you plant a forage soybean in between the rows of corn in order to boost protein levels, and maybe some clovers or alfalfa under winter wheat," he explains. "And we're just hoping the spring soil is going to be nice and soft, so that these clovers and alfalfas will actually over winter, and not be outcompeted by the winter wheat, coming through spring."

And there's more!

"We'll be talking about winter camelina which is very salt-tolerant compared to spring wheat, for example."

"And we'll also be talking about some very interesting things like applying mustard meal in pea seed rows, in order to reduce Aphanomyces, or pea root rot. And we don't know if this works but we suspect it might and we're just trying it out.  It's a bio-fumigant project.

"If you're coming, make sure to bring a buddy with you!" says Scott Chalmers. "I also want to add a 'thank you' to our cooperators who help us out here at WADO!"

Southwest Region Crop Day takes place Tuesday, April 2nd at the Melita Legion Hall.  10 am-3 pm

To pre-register call:

Scott Chalmers at 204-522-5415 (Melita)

Lionel Kaskiw 204-483-0531 (Souris)

Amir Farooq 204-764-0303 (Brandon)