Alfalfa seed


Alfalfa seed

FTLComm - Tisdale - Tuesday, September 30, 2003

The last crop to be harvested each year is alfalfa. When you drive through this part of Canada you will see little structures or huts in the fields. For many years these things puzzled me until it was explained to me that these were shelters for leaf cutter bees. The bees are used to pollinate the alfalfa crop.

This field three miles South of Valparaiso was being harvested today. Many alfalfa fields are still waiting to be done and are still a bright green. To get them ready for harvest the field is sprayed with a desiccant that kills the growth and leaves the plants ready for combining.

This field is producing an average yield of around 200 pounds per acre. This is a high value crop. Though some seed is used to plant more alfalfa fields most of the alfalfa grown is for export market where it is used to produce sprouts. The biggest customer for Canada's alfalfa seed is China.

Prior to sale the farmer will have the crop cleaned to remove the extra bits of some weed seeds and chafe

This particular field has ended its cycle as an alfalfa field and next year will be returned to growing other crops.

Timothy W. Shire



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