January 2019 Update
I recently was shown this really great app called iNaturalist. This app helps to identify plants and animals around you. All you have to do is take a picture of the plant/insect/animal, and the app will identify it. The app is connected with over 400,000 scientists and naturalists who can help you learn more about what you are identifying. If the app isn’t 100% sure what you are looking at, it will give you some top ideas and other uses can weigh in on the image to give their opinion.
Give it a try; it does ID weeds and insects found in most agricultural fields. Even if you don’t use it for on-farm applications it is a great way to learn more about the world around you! https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/inaturalist/id421397028?mt=8
Ontario Soil Network
The Ontario Soil Network is back up and running! The network is farmer run and working on how to improve soil and share lessons with other farmers.
In 2016, the program was open to farmers mostly in the western half of the province, but this year it is province-wide. Currently, applications are being taken for farmers who are interested. With a group meeting planned for those accepted January 17 and 18 in Kingston. Attendees will work on public speaking, presentations, and networking at the 2 day conference. From there the farmers involved will share their knowledge, challenges and successes with other interested farmers across the province.
Find out more here, with more updates to come as the program gets up and running more this spring. Grain Farmers of Ontario is a proud supporter of this initiative, and I sit on the advisory board.