Seed World

Benefits of Diversifying Crop Rotations Revealed in Regional Factsheets

The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) recently announced it has completed 12 regional fact sheets for the Resilient Rotations project, shared a release.

As part of the Integrated Crop Agronomy Cluster (ICAC), the Resilient Rotations project evaluates a multitude of crop rotations to aid in the production of cropping systems with enhanced productivity, sustainability and resiliency across the Canadian Prairies.

“We are approaching crop rotation by looking at a systems approach — all the elements that impact crop rotation from soil health, economics and yield to local growing conditions,” said Kui Liu, project leader and research scientist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC). “It’s a more holistic way to look at crop rotation and one we hope will provide new insights and options for farmers in Western Canada in a more customized, prescriptive type of approach.”

Researchers are assessing six varying crop rotations on seven field sites throughout the prairies to offer recommendations founded on local growing conditions. Three sites are located in Alberta, three are based in Saskatchewan and one is in Manitoba.

Data taken from the four-year rotations has been analyzed based on yield, economics and efficient use for precipitation and nutrients in each region.

“We have produced 12 factsheets with regional results on how each of the six rotations performed based on the evaluation criteria,” commented Sheri Strydhorst, principal at Sheri’s Ag Consulting Inc. “We would also encourage growers and agronomists to complete our survey to help us better understand what would encourage the adoption of more diverse crop rotations.”

To access the factsheets, visit

“There are agronomists, weed scientists, pathologists, economists and soil health experts involved in this project,” added Wayne Thompson, WGRF executive director. “A testament to the diversity of factors that impact an effective, sustainable and productive approach to crop rotation. WGRF invests in research like the Resilient Rotations project with the goal to help farmers make decisions that are the best fit for their operation.”

WGRF, Alberta Wheat, Sask Wheat, Alberta Pulse Growers, SaskCanola, Manitoba Crop Alliance, and AAFC provide funding for the Resilient Rotations project through the Canadian Agriculture Partnership.