Wild Parsnips

Yesterday, a local farmer near Outlook, SK, warned people to be on the lookout for Wild Parsnip growing in the province. It’s a very dangerous plant that can cause blisters on the skin and even temporary or permanent blindness. Please memorize what this plant looks like and share with your family and friends.

According the Ministry of Agriculture, the main infestations are along Highway 48 from Vibank to Kipling, between Saskatoon and Rosthern and Highway 40 from Cutknife to Neilburg.

Any sightings of wild parsnip should be reported to invasives@npss.sk.ca.

More info from Gov. of Sask
PDF download > goo.gl/jqFXF1

More info from Gov. of Canada
Website > goo.gl/yNu53K

Pasture Tour

Saskatchewan Pasture Tour

Registration is now open! http://aurorabachelet.it/2017/11/osservare-scientificamente-sopresa/img_1537 Click here to view the registration form and agenda. For more information, contact the SFC at 306-329-3116 or buy Lyrica canada pharmacy office@saskforage.caThe Saskatchewan Pasture Tour is your ticket to the latest information on forage species, fertility, pasture management and Farm Stewardship Programming! This year’s topics also include cattle handling facilities, corn and swath grazing, native and tame pasture management, labour sourcing and more.

Strychnine Concerns

Attention all RMs:

Re: Concerns regarding 2% Liquid Strychnine

SARM is concerned that unless we can demonstrate that 2% liquid strychnine concentrate is being stored, sold and applied properly it could jeopardize its availability for use in Saskatchewan.   The Pesticide Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) is currently providing a “restricted” registration for this product due to its health and environment risks and monitors it closely.

As part of the restricted registration:

  • RMs can sell/distribute 2% liquid strychnine concentrate to their ratepayers for use on their own agricultural land to control Richardson Ground Squirrel.
  • Ratepayers are required to fill out a Purchase Agreement and Product Evaluation Form and return it to the RM.   Please see forms attached.
  • The RM then provides copies of these forms to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture (SMA).   Email reminders are send out from SMA via SARM to RMs.

SARM is reaching out to RMs selling this product to assist by emphasizing to ratepayers the importance of abiding by the restrictions and returning the required forms so we can maintain the availability of this product for use in Saskatchewan.

Please see the attached letter that PMRA sent to RMs in 2015 which outlines the requirements for selling, storing and applying this restricted chemical.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter.






Ray Orb



Crop Report May 8-14, 2018

For the Period May 8 to 14, 2018

Seeding Progress in Saskatchewan
Per cent seeded
All Crops
May 14, 2018

May 15, 2017

May 16, 2016

May 18, 2015

May 11, 2014

May 13, 2013

5 year avg.

10 year avg.









 Saskatchewan Seeding
 Per cent seeded all crops May 14, 2018
Spring wheat  33
Durum  39
Barley  23
Oats  15
 Canary seed  26
Flax  14
 Canola  26
Mustard  39
Soybeans 36
Lentils  57
 Field peas 63
Chickpeas 54

Thanks to good seeding conditions, Saskatchewan producers made up the time lost in previous weeks.  Thirty-five per cent of the crop is now in the ground, just ahead of the five-year (2013-2017) seeding average of 32 per cent for this time of year. Crops are starting to emerge.

Seeding is furthest advanced in the southeast, where 49 per cent of the crop is in the ground.  Forty-five per cent is seeded in the southwest, 28 per cent in the northeast, 26 per cent in the west–central region and 24 per cent in the east-central and northwestern regions.

Rain showers were reported throughout the province, particularly in the southwestern and west-central regions. The Gull Lake area received 18 mm of rain, the most in the province.  There have been multiple reports of grass and stubble fires due to the dry conditions and rain would be welcomed to help alleviate dry field conditions and concerns.

Most areas need rain to help alleviate dry field conditions.

Thirty-three per cent of the spring wheat, 26 per cent of the canola, 57 per cent of the lentils and 63 per cent of the field peas have been seeded to date.  Little rain, warm temperatures and strong and warm winds have caused topsoil moisture conditions to decline.  Hay and pasture growth is slow due to little rainfall.  Provincially, topsoil moisture conditions on cropland are rated as 57 per cent adequate, 35 per cent short and eight per cent very short.  Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as 40 per cent adequate, 43 per cent short and 17 per cent very short.

Producers are busy seeding, controlling weeds and moving cattle.

SaskPower reports 46 cases of farm machinery contacting electrical equipment in the last week, bringing the total for May to 73. Most farm-related incidents happen during seeding.  SaskPower reminds producers to be aware of their surroundings at all times and to plan ahead.  More safety information is available at www.saskpower.com/safety.

Fire Ban

The Rural Municipality of Cupar #218, the Village of Markinch and the Town of Cupar have issued a fire ban effective May 16, 2018.  This ban includes all open fires, camp fires, fires used for cooking, briquette barbecues, burning barrels, chimneys, briquette fire pits, portable fire pits including those contained in designated fire facilities and the discharge of all fireworks.

The ban does not apply to fires contained in cooking appliances fueled by propane or natural gas such as BBQ’s or Coleman stoves.

This order takes effect on May 16, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. and is in effect until further notice.  Please be advised a minimum fine for starting a fire is $500.

For further information contact the RM office at (306) 723-4726 or rm218@sasktel.net

Crop Report from May 1-7, 2018

For the Period May 1 to 7, 2018

Seeding Progress in Saskatchewan
Per cent seeded
All Crops
May 7, 2018

May 8, 2017

May 9, 2016

May 11, 2015

May 11 2014

May 13, 2013

5 year avg.

10 year avg.









Seeding is underway for many producers, with more expecting to hit the field in the coming week.  Nine per cent of the crop is now in the ground, behind the five-year (2013-2017) seeding average of 19 per cent for this time of year.  A slow start to spring has delayed field operations in much of the province.

Seeding is furthest advanced in the southwestern region, where 18 per cent of the crop is in the ground.  Fifteen per cent is seeded in the southeast, while all other regions in the province are reporting three per cent seeded.

Little to no rainfall was reported last week in most regions, with the Swift Current area receiving the most – 9.5 mm.  Many areas received rain earlier this week that will help with the dry field conditions.

Strong and warm winds have dried fields throughout the province, and many producers will need rain in the coming weeks to help crops germinate and establish.  Provincially, topsoil moisture conditions on cropland are rated as three per cent surplus, 67 per cent adequate, 25 per cent short and five per cent very short.  Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as two per cent surplus, 55 per cent adequate, 31 per cent short and 12 per cent very short.

Winter wheat assessment continues as fields green up.  Pasture and hay land growth has been slow and some cattle producers are supplementing feed.  There have been multiple reports of grass and stubble fires due to the dry conditions and rain would be welcomed to help alleviate concerns.

Farmers are busy seeding, working fields, controlling weeds and moving cattle.

SaskPower reports 25 cases of farm machinery coming into contact with electrical equipment over the last week, bringing the total for this month to 27.  SaskPower reminds producers that most farming-related incidents happen during seeding and spraying.  Check for overhead lines before beginning your work.  More safety information is available at www.saskpower.com/safety.

Crop Report from April 24-30, 2018

For the Period April 24 to 30, 2018

One Year Ago
One per cent of the crop was seeded. April precipitation resulted in wet fields delaying seeding in most areas.
Follow the 2018 Crop Report on Twitter @SKAgriculture
Seeding Progress in Saskatchewan
Per cent seeded
All Crops
May 1, 2017

May 2, 2016

May 4, 2015

May 4, 2014

May 6, 2013

5 year avg.

10 year avg.








A cool and late spring has delayed field work across the province. However, seeding has just nicely started in the southern areas. Most other areas have some field activity with harrowing, pre seeding herbicide and fertilizer applications.

Field conditions vary greatly across the province. The southern regions are dry and the northern and eastern regions are dealing with higher field moisture conditions. Topsoil moisture on crop land is rated as six per cent surplus, 64 per cent adequate, 20 per cent short and 10 per cent very short. Topsoil moisture on hay and pasture is rated as three per cent surplus, 63 per cent adequate, 28 per cent short and six per cent very short. High winds are drying up the soil quickly. The soils are slow to warm up and there is still snow and ice in some sloughs and ditches in the north.

Due to a low yielding hay crop in 2017, an extended cold winter, and a slow start up to spring, many livestock producers are feeding alternative feed sources and feed grains, while they wait for the pastures to green up.

Spring runoff in the south was below normal in many areas, leaving some livestock producers looking at how to sustain water supplies throughout the upcoming grazing season.

Rain was recorded in the south and east regions during the past week, ranging from trace amounts to 24 mm in the Big Beaver area.

Winter wheat survival will continue to be monitored as it is too early to make an accurate assessment.

2018 Highway Ditch Mowing Info

The hay salvage and mowing program provides:

  • free hay to farmers
  • a neat appearance
  • improved visibility
  • better control of brush and noxious weed growth
  • adequate snow storage in ditches during the winter months

Farmers may salvage hay anytime during the spring or summer months. Landowners or lessees nearest/adjacent to the highway ditch have the first option to cut or bale this material unless the mowing contractor has begun salvage.

Cut hay at a uniform height in the ditches. Place hay bales no less than eight metres away from the shoulder of the highway. Hay bales will be removed in locations deemed dangerous for motorists.

The Government of Saskatchewan hires contractors to mow a four-metre-wide swath along the highway shoulders. Mowing may also be completed near some highway intersections and interchanges, railway crossings and tourism facilities.

Key Dates

  • June 7 – July 15: Mowing includes a four-metre shoulder cut adjacent to the road. Highways 1, 7, 11, 16 and 39, along with portions of Highways 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9 and 10. Some highway intersections may receive a full ditch cut to ensure good sightlines.
  • July 8: Prior to this date, a landowner or lessee nearest to a highway ditch has the first option to cut or bale hay. After this date, anyone may cut and bale hay or grass in a highway ditch without getting the permission of the adjacent landowner.
  • July 15 – Oct. 15: Contractors begin mowing the width of ditches along all four-lane highways. All other highways get a four-metre cut adjacent to the highway shoulder.
  • August 8: all hay bales must be removed from ditches or they will be removed

Changes to Veterinary Antibiotics

Changes in Access to Veterinary Antibiotics

After December 1, 2018, Health Canada is moving all medically imported antibiotics to the federal prescription drug list.This change will help to ensure prudent use of antibiotics. This means:

  • Producers will no longer be able to buy antibiotic products from retail stores, only from veterinary offices or pharmacists, or mixed in feed from feed mills;
  • Producers will need a prescription from their veterinarian for all livestock and/or poultry antibiotics; and
  • Veterinarians must have a valid relationship with their client before writing an antibiotic prescription.

If you don’t already have a veterinarian you work with regularly, now is the time to find one.

For more information, contact Wendy Wilkins, Disease Surveillance Veterinarian with the Ministry of Agriculture, at 306-798-0253 or wendy.wilkins@gov.sk.ca.