GFM Network News


Joe and Helen Doef’s family has grown and so has their greenhouse business. But since partnering with Horseshoe Power on tri-generation, a first for Alberta, Doef’s Greenhouses is expanding by leaps and bounds, says Eric Doef (upper right), one of the operation’s managing partners.

Unique partnership a triple play for Lacombe County greenhouse

Operation taps nearby natural gas for heat and power while capturing and using carbon dioxide

Reading Time: 3 minutes When it comes to running a greenhouse, one of the biggest costs is energy. But a partnership between Doef’s Greenhouses in Lacombe County and an Alberta energy company has changed that equation. “Generally oil and gas went about their thing, and agriculture went about their thing,” said Brad Murray, president of Horseshoe Power, which has […] Read more

The gardening craze even extended to apartment dwellers who grew salad greens in hanging baskets and potatoes and carrots in pots, said Shelley Batdorf (pictured with husband Roy) of Pots ’n’ Pansies Greenhouses and Garden Centre.

COVID-19 pandemic produces a bumper crop of novice gardeners

Whether it was growing their own food or beautifying the yard, gardening was hot in 2020

Reading Time: 4 minutes Greenhouses, garden centres and nurseries experienced a year like no other in 2020 as first-time gardeners took up trowels and hoes in unprecedented numbers. “Even if people had never planted before, they wanted to grow a garden,” said Tammy Meinecke, manager of Dunvegan Gardens in Grande Prairie. “Everybody was out planting seeds and trying to […] Read more





Cannabis farm

An unintended consequence of cannabis legalization

The money in cannabis has made it a highly attractive alternative to greenhouse plant propagators


Reading Time: 3 minutes When the Government of Canada changed the Criminal Code and legalized cannabis, it raised very few eyebrows in the agricultural community. It was debated as a crop on all levels and later recognized as an agricultural product. Where it was grown and by whom was left to other jurisdictions. It was viewed as an opportunity […] Read more

(iStock/Getty Images)

EU nations back ban on all outdoor neonic use

Brussels | Reuters — European Union countries backed a proposal on Friday to ban all use outdoors of insecticides known as neonicotinoids that studies have shown can harm bees. The ban, championed by environmental activists, covers the use of three active substances — imidacloprid, developed by Bayer CropScience; clothianidin, developed by Takeda Chemical Industries and […] Read more


(VillageFarms.com)

Hothouse produce grower to devote site to marijuana

Canada’s only publicly traded greenhouse produce-growing company plans to put up one of its British Columbia greenhouses for a new venture in cannabis production. Vancouver-based Village Farms announced Tuesday it has partnered with Victoria-based medical cannabis producer/processor Emerald Health Therapeutics in a 50/50 joint venture to grow cannabis for medical use and, pending changes to […] Read more

(Photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Russian farming firm to test investor appetite

Moscow | Reuters — Russian farming conglomerate Rusagro launched a secondary share offering on Thursday which will test foreign appetite for Russian assets. Share sales by Russian companies have been rare since Western sanctions imposed in 2014 over Ukraine cut access to foreign capital markets and after a sharp drop in global oil prices, the […] Read more


Himalayan balsam can launch seeds five metres from the parent plant.

Invader blasts its way into wet areas

Reading Time: < 1 minute Himalayan balsam can be spotted in a number of municipalities across Alberta, and is especially common in flower beds. Before it was listed as a prohibited noxious weed, Himalayan balsam was a very popular ornamental. It was even readily available in greenhouses. Himalayan balsam is incredibly invasive in wet areas — mature seed capsules explode […] Read more

Greenhouses are just one sector where efforts to reduce energy consumption are underway.

Alberta producers tap into energy management program

There have been more than 400 applications in Alberta for the Growing Forward 2 
On-Farm Energy Management Program

Reading Time: 2 minutes Across Alberta, agricultural producers are using new ideas and emerging technology to reduce their energy consumption. For greenhouse operators in Alberta’s challenging climate, managing energy costs is an issue of the highest importance. At Broxburn Vegetables, which operates a three-acre greenhouse growing peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers near Lethbridge, owner Paul de Jonge has tried a […] Read more