Regeneration Canada and Sustainable Grain are offering a mini-course on Integrated Nutrient Management. In this course participants will learn about strategies to improve nutrient use efficiencies and reduce fertilizer inputs as part of transitioning to regenerative agriculture practices.
Joel Williams will provide a high-level overview of the many factors that interplay between plants, roots, soils, and weather, in the production of field crops. Chris and Alex will share their specific experiences, successes, and challenges, in introducing intercropping, companion cropping, liquid inject, and foliar nutrient applications, and the reductions they have accomplished in crop input reliance as a result. It is hoped that this overarching introduction to the concepts and tactics of integrated nutrient management will set the stage for a series of in-field demonstrations and workshop-style events to be held in person across the Canadian Prairies in the summer of 2022.
1:00 pm : Introduction
1:10 pm: Strategies to improve nutrient use efficiencies and reduce fertilizer inputs – Joel Williams
2:00 pm: Ecological principles of intercropping – Joel Williams
2:45 pm: Break
3:00 pm: Practical experience with intercropping and foliar inputs – Chris Raupers
3:45 pm: Practical experience with fertility management of intercrops and carbon-based inputs – Alex Boersch
4:20 pm: Conclusion
Joel Williams is an independent plant and soil health educator, a healthy soils advocate and presenter on soil biology, plant nutrition and agroecological farming systems. Joel has a Bachelor of Agricultural Science specialising in plant and soil dynamics and has a keen interest in managing plant diversity, soil microbial ecology and plant & soil nutrition to optimise soil function and crop immunity. He has a passion for teaching and sharing both scientific and practical information and has lectured to farming audiences internationally.
Alex Boersch’s father left his family farm near Cologne, Germany to establish a homestead of his own in Canada in 1988. He settled in Elie, Manitoba where Alex was born and where they now, together with other Boersch family members, continue the tradition of farming on 5000 acres of land just west of Winnipeg.
Chris’s father and uncle practiced no-till, but learned and worked in the conventional industrial system, the same system where Chris was educated, at Prairie colleges. Cardale Grain Farm currently grows traditional wheat, barley, oats, canola, peas, camelina and has incorporated intercropping, hay production, and cover crop blends for the livestock that graze there. The farm is healthier, uses fewer inputs and is much more resistant to disease and disastrous climate events as they come.