The precipitation that fell in the form of snow over the past few days has done little to alleviate the dry soil moisture conditions across many of the agricultural growing areas in Alberta, according to a crop specialist.
“There’s been little accumulation of snow to date and what has fallen has barely been enough to wet the ground in terms of actual water percentage,” said Harry Brook of the Alberta Ag-Info Centre.
Southern regions had a little extra moisture going into the fall. “Some producers in that area had begun spring field work with some individuals actually getting some seeding done,” Brook said. As for soil moisture in central and northern Alberta, including the Peace River district, little in the way of moisture went into the ground before winter. Those areas remain on the dry side heading into spring seeding, he said.
Brook said April 12 the weather outlook included a heavy snowfall warning for parts of Alberta, but again there had been little in the way of accumulations, with the exception of the northeast corner of the province around Lloydminster.
“In some places the ground is so hard, the water will run right off, in other locations, the soil is so parched, it is immediately absorbed,” Brook said. The outlook for annual crops was seen as decent if timely rains are received, Brook said. However, hay and pasture land are in terrible shape and are in need of measurable precipitation soon.