The Canadian Rocky Mountains. Banff National Park. The region congers up images of unspoiled wilderness hikes and skiing in a majestic winter wonderland; the great outdoors at its finest. For dairy farmers and race horse owners, the eastern slopes of the Canadian Rockies are famous for something else. Hay. The region boasts Timothy hay of acclaim the world over.
Timothy hay grown at the higher altitudes of the eastern slopes of the Canadian Rockies is extremely palatable. The growing season in this region is characterized by long warm days and cool nights- ideal conditions for producing Timothy hay with higher sugar content.
The region is also characterized by long, inhospitable winters; unpleasant yet advantageous for the purposes of crop production. Unlike crops grown in areas with longer growing seasons and milder winters, the sub-zero temperatures of this area enable a more natural method of husbandry. There is little to no need for pesticides and herbicides because the same winter that is inhospitable to humans is also inhospitable to many pests and weeds.
The shorter growing season means that land isn’t forced to produce by the use of artificial fertilizers. Where hay producers in warmer climates may coax 6 or 7 cuttings out of a given area in a season by using artificial fertilizers, only 1 or 2 cuttings in a season are possible east of the Canadian Rockies. The land has time to recover so the following year’s crop is grown in rich, healthy soil.
Barr-Ag Ltd is a producer and exporter of Timothy hay, grain and forage. Our operation is based out of Olds, Alberta, near the eastern slopes of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. If you are interested in finding out more about Barr-Ag’s hay and grain and export operation, visit our website at www.barr-ag.com