Seeding is about 10 per cent complete throughout the region with some areas reporting as high as 30 per cent. Warm, dry weather at the beginning of the week helped to dry fields allowing producers to seed, but widespread weekend rainfall brought seeders again to a standstill. Reports of 40-60 mm in the Melita, Waskada, and Deloraine areas. Souris, Virden and Brandon areas reporting 30-40 mm. Hamiota, Shoal Lake and Minnedosa areas reporting 25-30 mm. The continued rainfall will play a major role in the amount of acres that get planted in the southwest. Some crop is being planted with floaters and harrow bars. Some spraying has occurred to control weeds. Pastures are starting to green up but several acres still remain under water. Producers are running short of feed in some areas. Concerns about forage land as water remains for long periods of time.
Seeding in the Roblin area has progressed to 70 per cent wheat and 45 per cent canola acres being seeded. Swan River has approximately 30 per cent wheat seeded. The remainder of the region is at five per cent, as not all soils have been dry enough to seed. Activity increased rapidly during the week in most of the region. Warm and windy weather earlier in the week extensively improved soil conditions. Rainfall over the weekend stopped seeding operations, with the majority of rainfall occurring in the Dauphin region and light amounts in other areas. All areas experienced cold temperatures over the weekend, with some localized reports of frost. Weed growth is developing rapidly.
Diamondback moth counts are very low and have just begun showing in monitoring traps.
Pasture and forage development has improved with drying conditions and warm temperatures. Increasing lake levels on Lakes Winnipegosis and Dauphin remain problematic.
Overall, 50-60 per cent of the crop is seeded. Cereals are 70 to 80 per cent seeded, canola is 50 per cent, corn is 75 per cent, soybeans are 30 per cent and potatoes are 60 per cent. The crop seeded the first week of May is emerging after the week of warm weather. Cereals are first to second leaf, corn first leaf and canola emerging. General rainfall on May 21 was around 38-50 mm and high as 75 mm southwest of Carman. The rainfall set back seeding in most areas at least until May 26, including fields where flood waters had receded and were days away from being seeded. Some canola has been broadcast seeded and harrowed after to increase soil-to-seed contact. Pre-seed weed control has occurred in a number of fields to control first flushes of weeds. Pasture and hayfields are doing well for moisture, but are behind normal because of cooler early-May temperatures. Warm weather last week has increased growth in pastures.
Across the majority of the region, 25 to 40 per cent cereal acres were seeded; Vita area was reported 80 to 90 per cent complete. Canola acres seeded are 30 to 40 per cent; soybean and sunflower seeding at 30 to 50 per cent; corn planting varied from 60 to 100 per cent between districts. Very good emergence has been noted on early-seeded wheat and canola fields, but some fields have exhibited uneven emergence due to excess moisture combined with cool soil in low-lying areas. Grass seed fields began greening up. Seeding resumed early in the week with steady progress until trace amounts of rain fell Friday evening. Rain on Saturday completely stopped producers, with rainfall accumulations ranging from 18 to 25 mm throughout the region. Standing water is evident on many fields.
Winter wheat crop conditions are fair to good across the region, with stand losses due to flooding occurring in some areas. Fertilization of winter wheat is almost complete while some herbicide spraying for broadleaf weeds reported in some areas.
Hayfield condition is rated as good with growth now evident and showing potential for good yield. Pasture land condition is rated as good. Pastures are starting to green up, but demonstrating slow growth. No significant cropping changes are considered yet, except for talk about switching to earlier-maturing varieties if rain persists into next week.
Seeding area ranges between 20 to 30 per cent completed on most farms, with progress more advanced in areas at higher elevations and with bet ter drainage. Seeding occurred quickly, favoured by sun and wind throughout the week allowing for strong drying conditions. Soil moisture across the region is high and field operations were limited to higher, better-drained soils. Weed growth is advanced making pre-seed herbicides necessary on many fields.
Rainfall over the weekend ranged from six to 25 mm across the region with the higher amounts falling in the south Interlake. Weekend rains will delay field operations for several days. Tame hay growth is very good with alfalfa reaching up to 20 cm in height.
Pasture growth is good with most cattle being turned out. Feeding areas are very wet with severe ruts from feeding operations. Flooding around Shoal Lake and near Lake Manitoba has caused relocation of several cattle herds that were stranded.
Movement of cattle was hampered by poor road conditions around flooded areas, but many roads are being repaired to facilitate the movement of cattle trailers. The high water level forecast for Lake Manitoba has reduced the acres available for summer pastures.