THINGS ARE moving, at last. The snow is melting rapidly in temperatures of around 17C and all the migratory birds are back – Canada geese, mallard ducks, hawks and chirping blackbirds.
Also coming in is dry compound fertiliser in bulk before the weight restricting road bans are in force as the frost comes out of the roads.
We use two blends. On all crops, except canola, we apply 120kg/ha of 14:25:10:10 NPK+S, which costs 145.22/t. The canola gets 5:25:10 NPK, costing 10.60/ha for 70kg/ha, with sulphur going on with 110 l/ha of liquid 28% nitrogen. Nitrogen this year is priced at 110.87/ liquid tonne (0.40p/kg of actual N).
A recent arrival in Canada to join us in the farming operation is our son John, his wife Dasha and our eight-month-old granddaughter Annabelle.
All I have to do now is get him up to speed on the Canadian farming system and I will be halfway to my ambition of becoming a triple “A” farmer – April, August and Arizona for the winter!
Hopefully helping towards that goal is the use of the futures markets, options and target pricing to protect against falling prices while gaining any upside increases.
It is something we had not experienced in England and have not really felt comfortable with here, but this year”s depressed prices and poor returns have concentrated the mind.
I recently attended a three day course sponsored by Sask Wheat Pool and run by Mitcom”s Paul Cassidy – a former grain trader turned consultant and instructor.
It was very informative, showing us how to protect yourself while trading. One thing was certain. Grain in the bin is not yet money in the bank and any means to make that bank balance better has to be looked at seriously.