After the success of its previous transatlantic study tour to the United States in 2015, AHDB Horticulture, The Bedding and Pot Plant Centre and The British Protected Ornamentals Association (BPOA) are now organising a two week study tour to Canada.
According to AHDB, ‘The study tour has been designed to share with growers the latest products, technical innovation, news and research from Canada and to identify potential new commercial opportunities for UK growers.’ As well as visits to nurseries and the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, the trip will include the Canadian Greenhouse Conference in Niagra Falls in October.
A provisional itinerary and estimate costs are available on the AHDB Horticulture website and further details will be posted if there is sufficient interest. ‘The overall objective is to offer growers an opportunity to learn from the Canadian ornamentals industry in order to help identify new product ideas and technical innovation that can be implemented back in the UK,’ according to AHDB.
Photo Caption: Previous study tour to the US
Photo Credit: BPOA / NFU
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The soaring costs of imports from the United States and a weak currency is helping Canadian farmers cash in on some of the highest vegetable prices the country has seen in years.
With prices for the traditional Canadian arable crops of wheat and canola (oilseed rape) seeing falls of almost 10 per cent on the previous year, many farmers are seeing vegetable production as a lucrative alternative. One carrot grower about 120 km southwest of Saskatoon commented, “Per acre, there’s nothing quite like it right now. You can make good pocket money off 50 acres of land.”
Fresh vegetable and fruit prices jumped 18 and 13 per cent respectively in January year over year, according to Statistics Canada. Vegetable plantings in Saskatchewan may grow by up to 10 per cent this year according to Bob Purton, president of the Saskatchewan Vegetable Growers’ Association.
Meanwhile, in Alberta, the value of carrots reached $5.4 million last year, the highest since 1997.
Photo Caption: Vegetables are replacing canola for many Canadian farmers
Photo Credit: Wikipedia
The post Canadian farmers return to vegetable production appeared first on Hort News on 9 March 2016.
The humble earthworm may be a threat to plant diversity in certain natural ecosystems says a new study.
Researchers from Université Laval and Université de Sherbrooke in Canada showed a correlation between the presence of these invertebrates and reductions in the abundance of certain tree and other plant species in the understory of sugar maple forests in southern Québec in Canada. However, this is situation is based on geography as earthworms were introduced to Canada from Europe.
“The most likely explanation is that the earthworms consume organic matter in forest litter,” suggests Line Lapointe, a professor at Université Laval’s Faculty of Science and Engineering and the study’s lead author. This results in soils that can’t hold as much moisture, and that in turn interferes with seed germination and the ability of some species’ plantlets to survive.”
The researchers added, ‘The earthworms found in [North American] lawns, gardens, and farmers’ fields, as well as those raised for bait, all belong to species that were brought here, intentionally or otherwise, by Europeans settlers. Their geographical distribution is closely tied to human activity.’
Photo Credit: Wikipedia Commons
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