The extreme weather conditions this summer have made it difficult for farmers to produce crops. A Saskatchewan dairy farmer said, “ It’s these types of years that you can see the drastic difference.” Paul Kernaleguen a farmer in Birch Hills, Saskatchewan has experienced one of the worst droughts to impact the Prairies in over 50 years.
Kernaleguen’s farm is lush with green crops standing waist-high, and his neighbours fields are dry and yellow. Even though droughts are a common occurrence in the Prairies, climate scientists warn that the droughts will happen more frequently and more intensely. A hydrologist at the University of Saskatchewan said “When we think about climate change, I think we can be expecting to experience more drought in the future.”
Kernaleguen claims his crops would have failed years ago in the heat if he did not start practicing cover cropping. It was the process of carefully selecting the right plants and engineering the land to be more resilient to heat. Instead of having fields of just one crop, Kernaleguen blends the fields so there are different stalk lengths and leaf types. Each plant has a different root system that may be complementary to other plants.
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