Transferring knowledge about water management

This report summarizes a series of activities undertaken to provide knowledge transfer of water management practices to producers in the Bulkley-Nechako & Fraser Fort-George region. Activities included developing a summary of online resources, consulting with producers across the region and delivering a set of workshops/webinars.

Based on producer input, prioritized topics for the knowledge transfer events were keyline design and strategies for dryland farming. The report also includes a series of recommendations and next steps for further knowledge transfer supports in the future.

The resource summary document identifies online resources for farm water management. A brief description and links are provided for each resource. Topics include:

  • Livestock watering systems
  • Irrigation infrastructure and practices
  • Soil moisture management

Webinars are available on the following topics:

  • Forage crop and variety selection for dryland farms
  • Managing moisture with soil organics and soil tilth
  • Keyline design for water management
  • Agroforestry for water conservation


Webinar: Forage Crop and Variety Selection for Dryland Farms

In this webinar, Mike Witt, of Witt Precision Ag and Bar WT Farms, provides information about dryland hay production, including:

  • Forage management for drought conditions and how plants manage for the drought
  • A review of specific forage species and how they perform under dry conditions
  • How to select the right species for your operation

Webinar: Building Soil Carbon and Soil Tilth for Water Conservation

This webinar features professional agrologist George Powell discussing how to conserve water and manage moisture using soil organics and tilth, the structure of the soil. It includes:

  • An overview of soil tilth and the role that organic matter plays in soil structure
  • An explanation of how healthy soils trap and hold soil moisture
  • Management options producers can use to add and retain soil organics and soil tilth, with a focus on applications specific to the central interior of BC

Webinar: Keyline Water Management

This webinar features Tayler Krawcyzk of Hatchet & Seed discussing how to use keyline design for water management, i.e., slow, sink, spread, store and plan for overflow. It includes:

  • An overview of keyline design
  • How keyline design is being applied to different production models
  • Summary of a three-year monitoring project in the Capital Regional District on Vancouver Island
  • Applicability of keyline design to northern BC
  • Using the GIS (geographic information systems) service to work with farm topography

Webinar: Agriculture, the Water Cycle and Agroforestry

This webinar features professional agrologist George Powell explaining the water cycle and agroforestry, or how to tap into the water conservation benefits of trees on farms. It includes the following:

  • How producers can build their operation’s natural capacity to trap and hold water on the land
  • An overview of the water cycle and how agriculture influences, and is influenced by, the movement of water
  • An overview of how agroforestry systems work as a tool for water management and how to enhance farm water availability using trees and shrubs
  • Examples of using shelterbelts, silvopasture and riparian buffers


Project Report - Knowledge Transfer for Adoption of Water Management Best Practices - 2021

2 MB, pdf

Resource Summary - Summary of Water Management Resources for Agriculture in BC - 2021

550 KB, pdf


Webinar: Forage Crop and Variety Selection for Dryland Farms – YouTube

Webinar: Building Soil Carbon and Soil Tilth for Water Conservation – YouTube

Webinar: Keyline Water Management – YouTube

Webinar: Agriculture, the Water Cycle and Agroforestry – YouTube