Department of Crop & Soil Sciences

Washington Oilseed Cropping Systems

2015 PNW Oilseed & Direct Seed Conference

Conference Presentations

Research Projects

Winter canola twilight tour scheduled June 4 – Pomeroy

Join us for a winter canola tour June 4 from 4-7 p.m. featuring winter canola variety trials (small and large plots), water and nitrogen use efficiency and planting date differences, how N fertilizer placement can affect canola roots, fertilizer timing for canola, update on blackleg, and local grower testimonials about canola production on their farms.  The tour will be followed by a bbq hosted and sponsored by Croplan by Winfield and Pomeroy Grain Growers.  Please note an RSVP is required for the bbq.  See a flyer here.

Big crowd for Douglas County winter canola tour

Despite chilly, wet, windy conditions near Mansfield yesterday (May 13), 75 people turned out to learn more about winter canola production and cover crops.  At the first canola field Howard Nelson (CWGG) provided a summary of a fertilizer timing and placement study as well as discussing variety performance. The next stop provided attendees with information about and a look at large-scale winter canola variety strip trials.  The final stop included presentations by WSU/WOCS grad students and faculty about ammonia fertilizer toxicity to canola roots, water use of canola, soil compaction effects on roots and an overview of blackleg.  The tour concluded with a discussion and field visit with Leslie Michel (Okanogan CD) of ongoing cover crop studies in the area.

The information packet from the field tour can be viewed here.  Thanks to the field day sponsors, Ag Enterprise, Boulder Park and North Cascades National Bank.

Winter canola field tour near Okanogan – recap

The first winter canola tour of the season attracted nearly 35 people to see winter canola variety trials that included significant differences in winter survival between varieties, differences in response to fertilizer timing and amount, and weed control. Attendees also learned about nitrogen and water use efficiency, ammonia toxicity, soil compaction, and cover crops.

An information packet from the field tour can be viewed here.

Update on blackleg field scouting

As of April 17, more than 30 fields scouted in eight eastern Washington counties had no signs of blackleg.  The fields included winter and spring canola residue from 2014 harvest, live winter canola, and residue from 2014 cover crops. Scouting will continue in the coming weeks; please contact us if you would like us to speak about blackleg, scout a field on your farm, or if you find anything you think may be an indication of blackleg.  Here is a brief overview and FAQs about blackleg from WSU.

Blackleg confirmed in Idaho canola fields

As of April 2, blackleg has been confirmed in 10 of 11 winter canola fields from Moscow to Grangeville, ID.  Infestations have ranged from 1% of the plants to 30-40% of the plants. It was also found in residue of a 2014 spring canola field on the southern Winona Butte east of Greencreek, Idaho. If you have any live canola or other Brassicas, winterkilled canola residue, live cover crops or cover crop residue, 2014 spring Brassica residues, or Brassica or mustard family weed species in or near fields, take a few minutes to get a close up look at the leaves and stems for any sign of blackleg. As mentioned previously, the best defense is scouting, crop rotation (4 years between Brassica crops), buying certified blackleg-free seed, selecting blackleg resistant varieties, and making sure there is seed treatment applied.  Other information: image 1

Prospective Plantings estimates released

The USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service release prospective plantings data today (March 31, 2015).  Canola acreage is down 41% in Washington from a high of 51,000 acres in 2014 to an estimated 30,000 acres for 2015. Overall PNW acreage is down 25% with Montana being the only PNW state without reduced acres.  Major factors contributing to the decline include the severe winter cold events in November and December that decimated many fields of winter canola, and the recent low market prices for canola affecting spring plantings as well.  View the canola report here, and the entire crop report here.

Winter canola field tours announced

Two winter canola field tours will be held in north central WA in April and May.  Stay tuned for additional tours in other regions of eastern WA, and see the Calendar of Events tab to the left for complete information about each field tour.

  • April 16Okanogan Co. tour will feature winter canola variety trials, winter survival comparisons, nitrogen and water use efficiency, ammonia toxicity, soil compaction, and cover crops.
  • May 13Douglas Co. tour includes a winter canola fertilizer study by CWGG, no-till drill comparison, variety comparisons, ammonia fertilizer toxicity to canola, soil compaction, and cover crops.

Legumex Walker looking to sell all or part of assets, including Pacific Coast Canola

One asset with major importance to the canola market in the PNW is the Pacific Coast Canola processing facility in Warden. Legumex Walker has an 84% stake in PCC.  Read more in the Western Producer, and at

U.S. Canola Digest Mar-Apr issue features WSU and USDA-ARS research projects and events, photo contest winners from PNW

The latest issue of U.S. Canola Digest contains articles about research by Dr. Bill Schillinger, WSU (p. 27), Dr. Frank Young, USDA-ARS and graduate student Lauren Port (p. 21-22), as well as a wrap-up of the 2015 PNW Oilseed & Direct Seed Conference (p. 26). Steve Van Vleet, WSU Whitman County Extension Educator and Audry Melville of Enterprise, OR won second and third place, respectively, in the USCA annual photography contest (p. 23). CONGRATULATIONS!!! This will be the last print edition of the Digest, while the USCA Canola QuickBytes monthly e-newsletter will continue.

2015 PNW Oilseed & Direct Seed Cropping Systems Conference

THANK YOU!!!!  Another great conference has come and gone, and on behalf of the planning committee, many thanks are in order for the 60 sponsors and exhibitors, 85 speakers, more than 500 attendees, convention center staff, and local musicians Blue Mt Spanish Sound.  

Research posters and powerpoint presentations from the conference are now available.

Video of presentations will be posted as they become available. In the meantime check out videos from the 2014 Oilseed and Direct Seed Conference

University of Idaho winter canola data

The University of Idaho has updated their website, including new field trial results for spring canola, winter canola and mustard.  See complete data here.

*** BLACKLEG update ***

*** Presentation given in Kennewick in mid-November by Lindsey du Toit, WSU vegetable seed pathologist, to producers, industry and university representatives. *** Watch this educational video about blackleg disease and resistance management from the Canola Council of Canada. *** An updated alert about blackleg in brassicas has been published by WSU and OSU plant pathologists. *** Lindsey du Toit will be giving a presentation at the 2015 PNW Oilseed & Direct Seed Conference and addressing the blackleg situation in the PNW.

Washington Oilseeds Commission

The Washington Oilseeds Commission has an updated  information page - learn about who your Commissioners are, when the quarterly meetings are, assessments, research funded by assessment monies, and more.

Canola is featured crop on Washivore for September

An informational page was created by that highlights various aspects of canola and canola production in Washington State. While visiting the canola page check out all the other information about many of the state’s crops.

2014 Conference videos

General and breakout session videos from the 2014 Oilseed and Direct Seed Conference are now online.  Make plans to attend the 2015 conference Jan. 20-22 in Kennewick!

Canola Production in WA and WSU Oilseed Project

WSU CAHNRS Communications has produced a video with aerial footage from a winter canola field tour south of Odessa.  The video highlights the recent increase in canola acreage in WA, and provides information about the Washington Oilseed Cropping Systems project based at WSU since 2007. Winter Oilseed Supply and Delivery Points An updated list of winter oilseed supply (canola and rapeseed) from seed dealers and retail outlets in the PNW is now available.  Note the wide selection of conventional and herbicide tolerant varieties to address specific rotation and field situations.  Again, as noted below, be sure to purchase certified seed, and to use seed treatment to reduce the chance of blackleg. We have also provided an updated list of facilities accepting delivery of oilseeds.

More Blackleg information

An outbreak of blackleg has occurred in a diversity of crucifer/brassica crops across the Willamette Valley of OR this year. Blackleg, caused by Phoma lingam (sexual stage = Leptosphaeria maculans), has been found in numerous fields in at least 4 counties across the Willamette Valley, and has already started to cause some losses/impacts. The pathogen has been found infecting wild brassicas, brassica cover crops, brassica forage crops, brassica vegetable seed crops, and brassica oilseed crops. It is critical to purchase CERTIFIED CANOLA SEED, request seed treatment, and if planting cover crops that contain brassicas, make sure that you know the source of the seed, and that it is also certified.  Read a full alert from OSU plant pathologist Cindy Ocamb.

Canola Tour summaries

A summary of several of the winter canola tours in WA and OR can be viewed in a recent WSU CAHNRS newsletter.  A packet of information handed out at some of the tours can be viewed here.

PNW Canola Cash Bids

Click here to check on local cash bids for canola and other commodities at a location near you.


WBCS Project wins 2014 Team Interdisciplinary Award!

The Washington State Biofuels Cropping Systems (WBCS) project team will accept the award, sponsored by the WSU College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resources, in late April.  Since the project started in 2007, 15 state faculty, 7 USDA-ARS scientists, 6 research associates, 11 graduate students, and 12 technicians have been involved in conducting research and outreach about oilseed crop production in Washington State and the PNW.

Recent Publications from WOCS Scientists:

———————————————————————————————- The Washington State University Oilseed Cropping Systems Research and Extension Program, in partnership with the Washington State Department of Agriculture, is committed to supporting the grower and industry-based movement to diversify cropping system agronomics and markets through increased adoption and production of oilseed crops.

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WSU Extension leader earns award Spokane County Regional extension specialist Diana Roberts has earned the 2014 Pearl Award from WSU CAHNRS for her work with farmers and volunteering in her community. Roberts is an affiliate with the WOCS project and schedules annual tours of spring canola plots in Spokane County. Congratulations! Canola Quick Bytes September 2014 U.S. Canola Digest  The October issue features articles about biotech labeling, canola in China, entrepreneurial uses for canola oil, the latest on RFS and the biodiesel industry, and updates from around the U.S., including the PNW. USDA Announces Harvest Prices for 2014 Crop Year Small Grains and Canola Revenue Products Prices are for revenue protection insurance plans within the Common Crop Insurance Policy for wheat, barley, fall canola, and rapeseed in AK, ID, OR, and WA. Also included are the projected prices used in determining the initial insurance coverage.      

Washington Oilseed Cropping Systems, PO Box 646420, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-6420 USA Phone: 509-335-3475, Contact Us
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