Avoiding baler fires
Fires are one of the biggest hazards when baling hay and straw this season:
- routinely remove plant material, including dust that has built up on the baler;
- carry a fully charged and not expired “ABC” fire extinguisher on the baler or in the tractor;
- carry a shovel to throw dirt on a fire or extinguish hot spots;
- clean hydraulic fluid buildup and grease from the baler;
- carry a cellphone or use another communication method in case of an emergency;
- be able to give clear directions to your location for emergency crews;
- carry 10 to 15 litres of water to use in case a fire should start;
- repair hydraulic or fuel leaks immediately and adequately clean up spills;
- have regular communication with someone who knows your location in the event of an emergency and stay connected with neighbours.
North Peace research
North Peace Applied Research Association is in the third and final year of trials for two research projects — annual cover crop mixes and intercropping.
The goal for both projects is to improve soil quality and determine the forage value of such annual cropping systems.
To help growers improve their own fields, the association is looking at issues that can affect monocrops, such as potential for disease, loss of soil quality and fertility.
It is studying the impact and regeneration of soil quality and inputs for intercropping and cover cropping.
The wet weather in 2019 affected findings for intercropping and the cover crop mix trials, which resulted in a change to the cover crop blends at each treatment.
The research team plans to share results with growers and stakeholders next year.
Future research projects will continue to explore the advantages of intercropping over monocropping.