Ag Trivia

Image of Ag Trivia

The Saddle Hills County Rural Development Department is posting a number of questions about agriculture in the County. Each week we will post a new question on our Saddle Hills County Facebook page followed the next week with the answer.

All questions and answers will be posted here.

Good Luck!

Questions & Answers

Week One

Question: What is the estimate of the number of farms in Saddle Hills County?

Answer: 381 

Winner: Dori Steinke guessed 376. Congratulations!

Week Two

Question: What is the average age of the farm’s main operator within Saddle Hills County?

Answer:  54

Winner: Colten Pearson

Week Three and Week Four*

*Due to the fact that everyone was seeding or in the field we had no answers submitted for Week Three so we re-posted the question for Week Four. We got lots of answers.

Question: How many total farm land acres are in the County (includes cultivated, improved and pasture)?

Answer(s):  Because land designations change all the time there are different sources for potential answers to the question. 

1)   633,882 – from the County’s ASB Strategic Plan (2017-2019)

2)   662,150 – from the County’s most recent ASB Strategic Plan (2020 -2024)

3)   650,000 – from the latest Tax Assessment figures

We don’t want anyone who did the work to find the answer to go empty handed so; depending on the source you used in finding your answer any of the three following answers will be considered a winner.

Winners: Nicole Hornett, Bradley Bouck, Connie Cotton, Ryan Telford, Franky Tschetter

Week Five

Question: How many Councilors and Members at large are on the Saddle Hills County Agricultural Service Board?

Answer: Seven. Two Councillors and Five Members at large.

Winner: Elaine Ditner Mastaler

Week Six

View of Mystery Weed

Name this weed:  

Answer: Dames' Rocket

Dame’s Rocket is found in sporadic locations throughout the County and prefers moderately moist soils and loves humus rich soils of wooded areas! It is a biennial or short-lived perennial member of the Mustard family! The flowers are very fragrant - especially in the evening! Dame’s Rocket produces a rosette in the first

year of growth and then a flowering bolt in the second year. Currently, no selective herbicide is registered for use on Dame’s Rocket and hand pulling is the most effective way to control it.

Winners: Jo Ann Edey, Daniela Dolen, Andrea Steffen

Week Seven

Weed ImageName this weed: 

Answer: Orange Hawkweed

Orange hawkweed is currently only found in one location in Saddle Hills County. It is a fibrous rooted, perennial herb with a milky latex in the stems and leaves. Hawkweeds reproduce by seeds and vegetatively by numerous horizontal stolons, and rhizomes underground. Orange hawkweed is unique among both native and introduced hawkweeds in that flowers are a fiery orange colour. Hairs are an important characteristic of non-native hawkweeds and also in distinguishing between species. Controlling Orange Hawkweed: mechanical control will prevent seed production but will not inhibit reproduction via stolons and rhizomes. An application of a registered herbicide is the best way to control and get rid of Orange Hawkweed.

Winners: Andrea Steffen, Elaine Ditner Mastaler

Week Eight

Image of Weed of the WeekName this weed: 

Answer: Common Tansy

Common tansy is a perennial forb that reproduces by both seed and short rhizomes (underground horizontal roots). Introduced from Europe in the 1600’s, its pungently aromatic foliage has been used medicinally, as an insect repellant, and for embalming.

Winners: Ashton Easter, Andrea Steffen, Cali Jarvis, Emily Bolch, Elaine Ditner Mastaler

Week Nine

Name this weed:  White Cockle or White Campion

White cockle a.k.a white campion is a short-lived perennial (sometimes biennial) native to Europe. Plants are either male or female, so not all plants produce seed. White cockle prefers full-sun and rich, welldrained soils. Hayfields are a frequent habitat of this invasive plant – compounding the problem as weed seed gets distributed in baled forage.

White cockle can be a serious economic problem as its seeds are difficult to separate from alfalfa, clover and some grass crop seeds – and this invader is an extremely heavy seed producer. This plant emerges early spring, initially forms a taproot, and next spreading lateral roots. White Cockle should be sprayed with Mecoprop (in a product mix with 2,4-D and Dicamba) and Tribenuron-methyl (alone or in a product mix with Metsulfuronmethyl and quinchlorac) are registered for use on white cockle. Always check product labels to ensure the herbicide is registered for use on the target plant.

Winners: Andrea Steffen,  Elaine Ditner Mastaler, Garet Dika

Week Ten:

Image of Oxeye DaisyName this weed: Oxeye Daisy


Oxeye Daisy and the very similarly flowered Scentless Chamomile can be considered conspicuous, as there are no native white flowered daisies in Alberta. Often perceived to be a ‘pretty’ wildflower, this non-native is an aggressive invader. Oxeye daisy is a perennial that spreads primarily by seed, but also by shallow, creeping roots (rhizomes). Individual plants can produce over 500 seeds that are viable in the soil for 2-3 years or more. The greatest impact of oxeye daisy is on forage production in pastures and meadows. Cattle avoid oxeye daisy and therefore any pasture infested with dense stands of oxeye daisy will decrease forage available for grazing. Dense stands of oxeye daisy can decrease plant diversity and increase the amount of bare soil in an area.

 Shasta daisy is a cultivar (originated from) of Oxeye sold through nurseries and as seed in wildflower mixes. This fact makes public awareness critical to prevention and control. The two plants can cross breed, resulting in an invasive hybrid that is extremely difficult to distinguish from either parent.

 For additional information on Ox-eye Daisy:

Winners: This week's winners were: Andrea Steffen, Ashton Easter, Beverly Pasmeny, Julie Robinson, Sophie Schulz, and Gary Fox.


Week 11Image of Weed

Name this weed:  The notorious Scentless Chamomile - commonly referred to as Mayweed.

Scentless Chamomile can behave as an annual, biennial, or sometimes a perennial, but reproduces by seed only. Plants are usually very bushy and have a fibrous root system. This is not the chamomile used for tea as it is scent-less. A single, robust plant can occupy one full square metre and produce up to one million seeds!!!!

Scentless chamomile is well adapted to heavy clay soils and tolerates both periodic flooding and dry sites. It is a poor competitor but establishes quickly on disturbed sites. The seeds float on water and are widely dispersed this way.

The best methods to control Scentless are: spraying with a residual herbicide for control, planting competitive grass stands such as fescue and picking any flowered plant.

Learn More

Winners: This week's winners were: Andrea Steffen, Elaine Ditner Mastaler, Megan Fox, Andrea Mitchell.


Week 12

Name this weed:  Image of Weed of the Week