Winter cereal harvest continues, rain seen as benefit to remaining crops

Manitoba Crop Report and Crop Weather report for August 11

Southwest Region

An EF-2 tornado touched down near Scarth on August 7, destroying a farm property and causing loss of life. Wind speeds reached 190km/hr at the time of storm. Overall, the preceding week was windy and dry in the Southwest region, advancing crops in their growth stages quicker than normal. Scattered showers fell over some areas, which gave relief to the crops and grasses from continuous heat.

Deloraine and Waskada area got 31mm and 25mm respectively. Overall moisture conditions are adequate for most of the region.

Winter wheat and fall rye harvest is underway. Yields look to be average with good quality. Winter wheat yields are near 75 bu/acre and fall rye is 85 to 90 bu/acre.

Canola is at ripening stage, later seeded or re-seeded canola is out of flowering now. No major disease problems to report, though the canola disease survey is ongoing. There is some grasshopper feeding on pods, and some lodging occurring.

Early seeded spring wheat is ripening and producers have started pre-harvest treatments. The majority of fields will be close to pre-harvest stage (<30% moisture) by the end of the week. Barley crops are being swathed. Leaf disease is causing faster crop maturation, but may not affect yield. Oats are also ripening quickly in the recent heat. Cereals are rated as 90% good to excellent.

Soybeans are in late R4 to early R5 stage as upper most pods start to fill nicely. Crop looks to have handled warm weather well as crop is thriving in most of the region. There are some leaf diseases showing up like bacterial blight and septoria brown but intensity is not very high.

Peas are maturing well and ready to harvest in some areas. Producers are spraying pre-harvest treatments. Harvest will start by this coming weekend if weather allows.

Flax fields are progressing well and are drying down. There are no diseases or insect issues. Only weeds are the major problem in some fields.

Corn silks are drying up and the cobs are starting to swell. Most of fields are development are R2 stage of development. Recent rains and heat are favoring timely development.

Sunflowers are starting to enter R5.8 (full flower – later stage). There are some reports of grasshopper and lygus bug in the crop. Producers are scouting if there is need of spray.

Good weather over the past week let producers get some more good quality hay up. Some rain on the weekend slowed things down in some areas.

First cut hay nearly complete and a lot of second cut has been put up, some as silage.

Cereal silage has started in several areas and yields look to be average to above average.

Pastures are in good shape. Dugouts are 80% full. Some harvest of fall rye and winter wheat has started so straw is being baled.

Northwest Region

High temperatures throughout the week continued to advance the crop in the Northwest region. The weekend brought cooler temperatures and scattered showers along with high winds and thunderstorms. Soil moisture is adequate for the most part, although there are some very dry areas throughout the region that missed the rain showers.

Winter wheat and fall rye are in the hard dough stage and are very close to maturity however, it is still too early for desiccation. Spring wheat and cereals are mostly in the soft dough stage with some earlier seeded fields in the firm dough stage. Earlier seeded barley is starting to turn colour.

The canola crop is podding up with the latest seeded canola still flowering. Staginess in some canola fields remains evident. The high temperatures have resulted in sunscald on podded canola. Soybeans are at about R4 to R5 stage around Swan River and towards the R5 to R6 stage around the Roblin area. Field peas are podded with about 10% of the crop ripe. Some desiccation of field peas is taking place along with an initial start to harvest. The flax crop is through the flowering stage and into the boll development stage with bolls still light tan. Corn is tasseling. Fungicide applications are complete across the region.

Producers are encouraged to continue monitoring for bertha armyworms as the moth-monitoring program had traps in the “uncertain” range. Grasshoppers seem to be abundant in the Parkland region.

As first cut hay harvest is wrapping up, yields are being reported as variable with older stands yielding well below normal and newer, fertilized stands yielding closer to normal. Cereal silage and greenfeed harvest is underway with early indications of close to average yields on early seeded fields. Later seeded fields that will be harvested over the next two weeks are expected to yield better as they suffered less from the dry conditions. Pastures are in fair to good condition for this time of year and would benefit from additional moisture. Grasshoppers continue to be a significant problem. Water levels for livestock are rated from low to sufficient.

Central Region

Much of the region has received little rainfall for the last couple of weeks and late maturing crops would benefit from some precipitation to replenish topsoil moisture. Areas west of the escarpment that received significant precipitation most recently, have good soil moisture. Overall soil moisture conditions are rated as fair to dry for most of the region, yet crops are holding reasonably well having moderate temperatures.

Fall rye is ripe and harvest is progressing well. Swathing is underway or pre-harvest dry down products are being applied. Most of the rye harvest is done in the Red River Valley, with yields reported in the 100 bu/ac range and good quality. High levels of ergot reported in the Gladstone area with yields in the 80 bu/ac range. Areas west of the escarpment are not as advanced with the rye harvest but progressing. Harvested fields are being harrowed to break up and distribute crop residue. Winter wheat harvest is also underway with yields reported in the 60 to 70 bu/ac range.

Wheat, barley and oats are maturing rapidly. Many wheat fields in the Portage area and in the Red River Valley appear ripe and ready to be harvested. The Portage area is well below the seasonal normal for precipitation and crops are coming in fast. Earliest planted barley fields are swathed with many more looking ripe. Harvest of barley fields is expected within the week. Wheat, oats and barley are rated as good to excellent condition, standing up well and maturing evenly. Fusarium head blight symptoms are showing up in barley and wheat but the severity appears low. Most corn fields are pollinated (R1) while more advanced fields are in the kernel development (R2) to grain filling (R3 to R4) stage. Corn crops are looking well with the reasonable soil moisture and warmer temperatures.

Some canola swathing reported in the Gladstone, Carman, and Morden areas. Monitoring of canola fields for insects is ongoing with no major outbreaks reported so far. No major disease problems reported as the canola crop is maturing. Flax fields are few and finishing flowering as bolls develop. The flax crop looks good and standing up well. Sunflowers are flowering in the R5 to R6 stage with seed developing.

Field peas are advancing in maturity with some later planted fields still showing a few flowers (R4) but many are more mature into the mid- maturity stage (R6). Most advanced fields are reported ripe in the Gladstone and Notre Dame areas with some harvested but no yield reports to date. In the Altona area, field pea stands are quite variable and negatively affected from earlier rains that drowned out parts of fields.

Soybean fields are in the R4 to R5 or beginning seed stage. Soybeans could use some rain during this sensitive seed development stage.

No economical reports of soybean aphids.

Edible beans and also growing well, flowering and would benefit from some rain. Some white mold being spotted and reported in fields around the region.

High temperatures and no rain have become an issue for potatoes, especially in unirrigated fields. Seven-day risk for late blight was low to medium in the province. No late blight spores were trapped in any of the six sites of the spore- trapping network and no late blight reported in Manitoba.

Aphid numbers remain about the same as last week. Potato aphids were trapped in seven of eight seed potato fields. European corn borer trap numbers were lower than last week, but more fields reporting borer injury in stems. Stem rot associated with stem borer injury is being reported also. Aster leafhoppers and potato leafhoppers are being noted in some fields.

Grasshoppers are noticeable in many different fields and crops but no recent report of treatments applied to control populations. Forage yields on newer, well- managed hayfields are close to average while older hay fields are below average. Poorly managed pastures are doing poorly but well managed, rotationally grazed and rested pastures are fairing much better. Uncut hay fields are regressing to losses from insect pressure and dryness. There has been considerable harvesting of roadside hay. Greenfeed yields are good and corn is growing well. Rain would be a benefit. Water is adequate for cattle on pasture. Some straw is being baled up in harvested cereal fields.

Eastern Region

Since last Tuesday, rainfall accumulations in the Eastern region ranged from none to as much as 20mm occurring as isolated thunderstorms over the past weekend.

For the most part, temperatures remained above seasonal. Areas of wilting soybeans and corn continued to be noted. Overall, current soil moisture conditions on cropland were rated as 80% adequate and 20% short with the expectation that areas becoming short of moisture will expand. Pasture and hayland soil moisture conditions were rated as about 50% adequate and 50% short with the exception of previously flooded areas in the south. A continued absence of significant rainfall is a growing concern amongst producers in central and northern districts with the impacts expected to be most severe for warm season crops that are now in the midst of reproductive growth stages.

Winter cereal harvest started over the weekend. Harvesting of grass forage seed crops was ongoing. Pre-harvest herbicide applications on spring cereals was in full swing. Limited harvesting of early seeded spring wheat as well as barley crops had occurred. Wider spread spring cereal harvesting is expected by the end of this week if current weather conditions continue. Canola was pod filling with seed colour change beginning. Soybean growth stage ranged from early R5 to early R6. Corn was in the blister to early milk stage. Sunflowers were in the R5 (flowering) growth stages. Field pea harvest had begun over the weekend.

Grasshoppers remained a concern in soybean last week with field scouting continuing. Grasshoppers feeding on canola pods was observed in some fields but damage was limited to field margin areas and considered uneconomic to control. The rapid advance of canola crops to maturity was expected to limit further insect feeding.

The dry weather allowed for lots of haying progress and first cut on multi-cut beef hay fields was completed. Second cut beef hay was about 30% complete, yielding from 50% to 100% of normal with good quality. The lack of rainfall has affected yield more than expected, particularly for grass stands. Second cut alfalfa dairy hay harvest was completed with good quality and yields equal to or slightly better than average. Single cut haying was also complete, yielding less than 50% of normal and especially poor on lighter soils types. Pasture conditions ranged from fair to poor, declining with the dry conditions. Producers remained concerned about feed supplies for overwintering, making arrangements with grain producers to purchase straw. Baling of forage seed and winter wheat straw had begun. Livestock water supply was adequate for those using wells or able to efficiently pump from rivers. Dugouts in drier areas were either low or empty because of the lack of rain.

Interlake Region

Rapid development and maturity advancement in all crops has been the norm. Precipitation continues to be extremely variable with scattered thundershowers. Moosehorn received the highest amount at 14 mm; conditions have improved in the northwest part of the region. Although there is a bit of crop damage from excess moisture in isolated areas, the three-year trend of dry conditions continues for most, and much of the region continues to register significantly lower than normal. Crop yields will be impacted. As swathing and harvest has started, rain is not top of mind for most, but precipitation is desperately needed for fill in later maturing crops, as well as to replenish hay land and pasture.

Crops have continued to look better than rainfall amounts would indicate, but premature ripening is more noticeable, especially on lighter textured soils. Drought stress symptoms are becoming more evident in soybean in particular, but also in corn. Fababeans are suffering due to dry conditions. Crop yields are variable; higher yields are the result of an extra rain or two.

Cereals are changing rapidly, with drydown applications and swathing ongoing. Winter wheat yields reported to date in the 65 bu/ac range, with significant stresses last fall and this spring. Barley is being cut, and some is combined. Yields to date range from 60 to 110 bu/ac. Spring wheat harvest has begun, with a few early yields reported in the 65 to 95 bu/ac range. Harvest should be widespread by next week. Early oat harvest at 100 to 110 bu; swathing continues. Most of the fall rye harvest is complete with yields to date ranging from 60 to 100 bu/ac. Higher yields in hybrid varieties for the most part. Lower yields of hybrids were still a nice surprise, due to extremely dry conditions.

The majority of the forage grass seed harvest is complete. Yields are reported as poor to average, from 100 to 400 lbs/ac. Trefoil harvest has started. Flowering in solid seeded alfalfa seed fields is complete: some flowers remain in row-cropped fields. Lygus numbers have increased in some fields, and grasshoppers are a concern.

Pea harvest continues, earlier than anticipated due to dry conditions. Yields are good, ranging from 45 to 85 bu/ac. Most sunflowers are at full bloom. Flowering in late seeded

canola is generally complete. Seed colour change in earlier seeded varieties is increasing. Some drydown applications and swathing has started, and will be more widespread in the next 7 to 10 days. Full boll and colour change is seen in flax; average to good yields are anticipated. Soybeans have seen tremendous growth with heat and moisture. Flowering continues; most fields are R4 to R5. Drought stress symptoms are more evident, especially on lighter textured soils, and premature ripening is becoming more common. Grain and silage corn have grown significantly in the last month. Fill will likely be impacted by lack of precipitation. In the north part of the region, higher silage yields are expected in eastern areas.

Insecticide applications have tapered off, as crops get closer to maturity. Scouting will continue for second-generation diamondback moth larvae. Some spider mites have been seen in soybean fields, along the southern border of the region.

Greenfeed oats, millet and cereal mixes are being harvested, and yields are expected to be good, and will help to supplement alfalfa and grass hay supplies. Rains in some areas of the northeastern part of the region have resulted in very good hay yields.

Pastures that have been hanging on are also starting to decline due to lack of rainfall. Cumulative effects of successive dry years are taking a toll. Without rain soon, some producers may have to take cattle off pasture, especially to avoid further damage. Native hay yields will be poor in most areas; sloughs are dry for the most part. First cut hay is essentially complete. Although better than last year in many cases, yields will be below average for most. Well-fertilized fields have fared better. Fields cut in the last three weeks are seeing little to no regrowth in many areas due to lack of rain; second cut beef and third cut hay will be limited. Forage shortages are anticipated. Livestock water is adequate for most. A few isolated reports of water being hauled.

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