Company trainers teach farmers in Kenya to be village-level inoculum producers as a way to control the Striga weed. This process has slowed down as COVID safety limits physical distancing, travel and gathering, but these groups were able to plant more than 600 demonstration plots in September.  | Toothpick company photo

Project Toothpick helps farmers battle weed

The initiative aims to find a home-grown biocontrol inoculum for Striga, which threatens many of Africa’s staple crops

One of the world’s toughest weeds is literally getting a taste of its own medicine in Africa. Striga, a parasitic weed that has caused continued havoc on the African continent, is slowly but surely feeling the effects of an ingenious initiative — the Toothpick Project, now nearing commercialization. Striga (witchweed) is the No. 1 pest […] Read more

Gabby, left, Corrie, Charlotte and Dave Fisher manufacture and sell straw pellets from their farm near Blackie, Alta.  | Janet Kanters photo

Value-added business discovers gold in straw

Alberta family creates pellets that can be used for stoves, animal bedding, small pet litter and gardens and flowerbeds

Value-added has been a buzzword in agriculture for decades, and one family in southern Alberta has taken the term to heart to create several products out of one resource — straw. Corrie and Dave Fisher of Blackie have figured out how to compress straw into pellets for stoves, animal bedding, small pet litter, and for […] Read more

Mangalitsa (known as Mangalica in Hungarian) is a lard-type pig that was first bred in 1833. It is the only woolly pig in the world and also the fattiest one. | Janet Kanters photo

Mangalitsa pigs fill a specialty niche for farm

Southern Alberta family raises the pigs for two years in their natural environment, where they eat an all-plant ration and are grass pastured

It’s not unusual to run across free-ranging pigs in parts of Alberta, but one particular breed is sure to catch the eye. Mangalitsa (known as Mangalica in Hungarian) is a lard-type pig that was first bred in 1833, in a farm that belonged to Habsburg royalty. It is the only woolly pig in the world […] Read more


24-2 Draft Horses and Diamond B Ranch teamed up to present an 18-horse hitch pulling four grain wagons. | Janet Kanters photo

Acres of Prairies heritage

Pioneer Acres Museum near Irricana, Alta., held their 50th annual show Aug. 9-11, with thousands of people attending each day of the event. Situated on 50 acres of land, Pioneer Acres is aimed at preserving Alberta’s rural and agricultural heritage, and offers over a dozen buildings filled with unique exhibits and artifacts from the pioneering […] Read more