Crop Report – for Aug. 19, 2010

SOUTHWEST REGION

Most of the Southwest Region received rainfall over the past week with reports ranging from 20 to 80 mm. Larger accumulations coming in thunderstorms with reports of high winds and hail damage in some areas have caused crop lodging in many fields. Harvest of winter wheat and fall rye continued; however showers halted harvest operations.

Winter wheat yields are average and quality varies depending on fusarium levels. Fall rye is being harvested with reports of average to above-average yields with some reports of ergot.

Harvest of spring cereals has begun with some barley being swathed and a few fields being harvested. Most fields are about one week away from either swathing or preharvest. Some canola is being swathed with no major disease or insect issues to date. Flax is in the boll stage and some crops have lodged due to the recent heavy rains and winds. Sunflowers and corn continue to do well. There are reports of sunflower rust with some producers spraying fungicides.

Most producers have completed first cut and overall yields are above average with below-average quality. Some producers have started second-cut alfalfa and the recent wet weather has affected quality; yields are average. Wet conditions and continual rain is going to impact producers getting quality feed from slough areas. Rains continue to fill low-lying areas and cattle continue to overgraze high-land areas.

NORTHWEST REGION

General rains, thundershowers and some light hail were seen later in the week throughout the Northwest Region. Rainfall amounts ranged from 25 to 75 mm with The Pas receiving 125 mm. With the exception of the late-seeded cereals and canola, most acres are reaching maturing with five to 10 per cent of the acres considered fully mature.

Forage seed harvest is continuing. Higher incidence of diseases in cereals and canola is being reported, along with higher-thannormal weed pressure. Pasture conditions are good; however, the low-lying native pasture areas are still tending to be wet. The first-cut hay harvest is 90 per cent complete. Yields are 20 to 30 per cent above normal with quality below normal. The native hay harvest continues to be negatively impacted by wet land.

CENTRAL REGION

Harvest was postponed for a few days due to variable amounts of rain; amounts ranged from 15 to 50 mm. Larger accumulation amounts were reported in areas near Langruth (112 mm) and Glenora (100 mm). Harvest of spring wheat, barley and canola continued with variable yields being reported depending on early moisture conditions.

Spring wheat is grading well with low fusarium levels. Spring wheat yields range from 35 to 55 bushels/acre. Barley yields are averaging 60 to 80 bushels/acre. Oat harvest is starting and early yields range from 90 to 110 bushels/ acre. Canola that was swathed two to three weeks ago was harvested with yields in the 30 to 40 bushels/acre range.

Late-seeded crops are advancing well with the warm temperatures and good rainfall. Canola is at various stages depending on seeding date; late-seeded acres have good growth with expectations of good yields. White mould is present on edible beans. Bacterial blight is also evident on the older leaves of soybeans. Soybean aphids remain at low numbers. Producers are noticing weeds growing above the crop canopy in the later-seeded acres. Second-cut alfalfa is still taking place with good yields and quality. Rain over the past week will help second and third cuts of alfalfa but fields that were wet prior to the last rain may have water issues again. Recent rain should help maintain pastures and allow for good fall growth, letting producers keep cattle on pasture longer.

EASTERN REGION

Weather last week allowed continued haying and harvesting progress although intermittent showers and thunderstorms did occur. Generally rainfall amounts varied from 25 to 47 mm, while the southern areas of the region received anywhere from less than 10 mm up to 25 mm. Winter wheat harvest is 90 per cent complete with yields ranging from 40 to 70 bushels/acre and FHB levels ranging from one to 17 per cent. Approximately 10 per cent of the spring wheat acres were harvested and yields ranged from 15 to 50 bushels/acre. Reported FHB levels varied from near zero to three per cent. Lower-thannormal protein levels (10.5 to 12.5 per cent) are being reported.

Although quite variable, yields appear higher and quality consistently better in southern districts of the region. Oat harvesting is less than five per cent complete. Initial yields range from 85 to over 100 bushels/acre with acceptable bushel weights noted.

Some harvesting difficulties have been reported due to uneven crop staging. Canola harvest is less than five per cent complete with yields ranging from 15 to 40 bushels/acre with higher yields reported in southern areas of the region. Yield estimates in the northern areas range from 10 to 20 bushels/acre.

Soybeans continued to improve last week as seed filling continued. Sunflowers transitioned from flowering to seed filling but sunflower conditions and yield potentials still vary because of earlier excess moisture. Flax development ranges from 30 to 50 per cent ripe across the region although swathing has not begun.

Hayfield conditions ranged from poor to fair in northern areas to good in southern areas. Producers in southern areas made substantial progress on second cut which is nearing completion. In the northern areas, progress ranged from 40 to 85 per cent done first cut. Hay quality is rated as below average across the region. Hay yields are reported as 50 to 85 per cent of normal with drowned-out areas and inaccessible fields. Pasture land conditions are rated as fair to good.

INTERLAKE REGION

Weekend rainfall accumulations ranged from 40 to 75 mm with local extremes over 100 mm. An area around Inwood and north toward Fisher Branch received the heaviest accumulations. These amounts will delay progress of field operations.

Harvest progress was general across the region with swathing of canola and cereals well underway, with more progress in the southern areas of the region. Combining of winter wheat is almost complete while spring wheat harvesting has just begun. Winter wheat yields range from 30 to 70 bushels/acre and preliminary spring wheat yields range from seven to 30 bushels/ acre. Wheat samples are grading poor due to FHB and many producers are considering cleaning wheat in an attempt to meet CWB specifications.

Recent rains are causing concerns as sprouting in unharvested fall-seeded crops may be an issue. Sunflowers and soybeans appear in good condition. Alfalfa seed crops are host to botrytis infection but are expected to produce seed. Haying progress was limited due to high humidity and scattered showers. Many grain crops in the North Interlake are being harvested as haylage which will be a large component of the forage supply for many beef producers as hayland continues to be difficult to access. Pasture conditions were improving, but rainfall on the weekend has replaced any evaporation from lowlands that had taken place over the last month.

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