Alberta snapshot: Canola fields and sky.


Photographed 7 July 2014, near Hanna, Alberta.

Even though canola fields in bloom are a common sight on the Prairies at this time of year, there’s no way I could ever grow tired of those brilliant swaths of yellow. I once had a summer job at the museum in Fort St. John, British Columbia, where I learned to work the till in the gift shop. With our location on the Alaska Highway, we were a popular spot for tourists to drop in for maps and other information, and I remember that the postcard I sold the most copies of featured a canola field under a stormy grey sky. “What are those beautiful yellow flowers?” was the third most popular question, behind “Do bears eat people?” and “Where is the washroom?”     🙂

Is canola or rapeseed a common agricultural crop where you live?

What is canola?


  1. That is beautiful. I don’t think I would tire of that sight either. Nope, none of that growing around here. When wild mustard is in bloom, there are areas that are covered in bright yellow – along the road side or in some fields. Such a beautiful sight.

  2. It is a common sight here, too, but I don’t believe I have seen it featured on a postcard. Love the questions, with that particular Canadian word, washroom, for what we would see labelled as toilets or public restrooms.

  3. That’s an amazing scene–so dramatic! There are a few scenes that grab me every year, too, even though they never really change–autumn foliage, snow geese gathering, the yellow green of willow trees when spring finally comes. I’d love to see these canola fields someday!

  4. That is beautiful. I have never seen it growing in my area. I do use canola oil for cooking that comes from the canola plant. I love to see beautiful yellow blooms among green…so very pretty. Hugs

  5. We call it oilseed rape, and I love the sight of it too. I have flown over miles and miles of yellow fields in spring before and never tire of seeing it! Lovely photo!

  6. Yes, here rapeseed is very widely grown. In April/May the fields scream out at you with their vivid yellow colour. But it is not universally liked. It may be attractive to look at en masse, but it is responsible for many people suffering from allergies. Mr. Chef is one who suffers because of it and I myself, can detect the signs, before catching sight of it. My nose is tingling just at the thought!

    • Oh no, that’s horrible to be allergic to it…especially as it’s such a commonly-grown crop. I guess the only positive note is that the flowers don’t last very long. Allergies to pollen and fragrance can be quite debilitating.

  7. On our drive to work, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia (USA), occasionally we will come around a bend or hill & see a field that his just turned yellow with canola. Such color amoung all the green hay and corn fields.

  8. great photo!! Both in Canada and in The Netherlands we lived amongst the canola fields and I always loved it! Such a vast sea of yellow and somehow a time marker in summer too. Here in Ohio I have not seen it ,so an extra thank you for this lovley image. xoxoxo from Ohio.

    • I love the idea of the blooming canola as a time marker – that’s so true! I didn’t know it was grown in The Netherlands as well – it is an agricultural crop in more countries than I originally thought.

      Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend! 🙂

  9. No canola here, almost all corn and soybeans – which is not nearly so photogenic. I only know canola as a cooking oil made from the seed (like sunflower oil) – is it used for anything else?

  10. Beautiful picture, so soothing. I love canola fields and wheat, the color of the canola is great, but there’s something soothing to me about a field of wheat swaying in the breeze.

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