- Canola offers rotation option
- Helps control persistent weeds
- Good market available
Jeff Scott is a modern agriculture pioneer. Scott and a handful of other progressive farmers were bold enough to place their land and operating funds on the line to help establish winter canola in the Southern Plains.
Winter canola, a genetically-enhanced crop, was developed as a Land Grant University agronomist's searched for a better way to combat a serious weed problem in winter wheat production in the Southern Plains states.
Dr. Tom Peeper, Oklahoma State University weed scientist, was looking for a better way to remove persistent weeds from winter wheat continuously cropped for decades.
Almost ten years ago, Peeper asked Scott and other willing wheat farmers to help grow enough acres to prove canola would control weed problems when grown commercially over a large area in big wheat country.
Scott, who farms near Pond Creek, Okla., believed Peeper's research and realized the wheat he harvested was losing money when because of unwanted weed seed. Developed from spring canola varieties widely grown in Canada and northern U.S. farms, the first varieties had winter survival problems, were in short supply and had literally no place to be marketed successfully.
More research yielded better varieties with improved winter hardiness, better yielding qualities and a genetic ability to tolerate chemical weed control.
Scott is a founder and president of the Great Plains Canola Association, a farmer cooperative dedicated to promoting canola production in that area. He also serves with the U.S. Canola Association, the national organization for all U.S. canola production.