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Crop Report – for Sep. 22, 2011

SOUTHWEST REGION

Most of the Southwest Region received 10 to 30 mm of rain over the past week. Several areas reported frost Wednesday and Thursday evenings 0 with temperatures dropping to -4 C in some areas.

Harvest over the past week slowed as producers are waiting for the late-seeded crops to dry down. Rainfall and poor drying conditions did limit harvest towards the end of the week. Cereal yields continue to be average to below average with good quality. Canola yields are average to below average and the late-seeded crops will be affected by the frost.

Pastureland continues to decrease in quality as dry conditions and frost will limit production. Some producers have begun supplemental feeding on pasture.

NORTHWEST REGION

Harvest operations continued with favourable weather early in the week. Wednesday saw freezing overnight temperatures. Lighter frosts of -1 to -2 C occurred in the Ste. Rose and Laurier areas. In general, the heavier frosts of -3 to -4 C were reported west of the escarpment from Grandview and the Swan River Valley areas. Combining was interrupted as most of the region also received some scattered and variable rain showers mid-week.

The remaining five per cent of spring wheat yet to be harvested is now swathed. Quality is average to above average in colour and weight while protein levels are variable. Through the southern areas of the region, an above-normal number of wheat samples are reporting downgrading due to ergot. Wheat yields vary from 15 to 65 bushels per acre. Other cereal crops are 50 to 70 per cent combined. Yields of barley range from 40 to 80 bushels per acre with oats from 45 to 95 bushel. Overall cereal yield averages are higher through the Roblin-Swan River areas.

Approximately 50 per cent of the canola has been combined with about 40 per cent swathed. Yields are ranging from 15 to 60 bushels per acre with overall good quality. From Grandview and east of the escarpment, yield averages are lower. This area has most of the acres with late-seeded canola where some damage is evident from the recent frost.

Flax, soybeans, buckwheat and hemp acres are mature. The lighter frost has damaged terminal plant growth and immature seed of buckwheat and the late-seeded soybeans in the Dauphin area.

Post-harvest fieldwork continues as time and available fields allow. Winter wheat is germinating evenly and is establishing well; some planting around the Dauphin area continues. Significant winter wheat has been seeded into minimal or no stubble cover in fields affected by this spring s excess moisture.

Late-seeded greenfeed is recovering in areas that received a lighter frost. Silage corn shows frost damage primarily on leaf growth; some light husk damage is also evident. However, most fields are into dent stage or received only a light frost which minimized the impact.

For pasture not previously impacted by flood or overgrazing, conditions are good but growth has slowed. Straw is being baled, along with some limited haying being completed. Silaging of cereals is underway; up to eight tons per acre of barley silage has been reported to date.

CENTRAL REGION

The Central Region received killing frosts Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Temperatures went to -1 to -4 C for an extended period. Most crops were either harvested or mature enough to handle the frost. However, some lateseeded and later-maturing crops were affected.

Cereal harvest is 95 per cent complete with only a few lateseeded fields remaining.

Canola harvest is 85 per cent complete with balance of fields either swathed or still standing. Sunflower fields where the back of the heads were starting to change colour will be minimally impacted by the frost; some acres were not yet mature. Corn is in the dent stage.

Edible beans are being harvested with yields at 1,400 to 1,900 pounds per acre. A number of fields had been cut prior to the frost while other fields were still maturing. Soybean harvest continues and yields vary from 15 to 35 bushels per acre. A few fields were still green at the time of the frost. Winter wheat seeding is still taking place and early-seeded fields have started to emerge. Winter wheat planted into drier conditions is showing spotty germination.

Potatoes are being harvested and put into storage. Yields are expected to be lower than average due to the earlier hot, dry conditions.

Pastures did not improve with the last rainfall so supplemental feeding is starting. Other producers are grazing their second cut of hay and if available putting cattle onto grain stubble. A few fields of alfalfa were cut for the third time last week to allow producers to gather up extra feed. Greenfeed is being harvested; acres affected by the frost will be tested for nitrates prior to feeding. Silage corn harvest will start once moisture contents are reached for ensiling.

EASTERN REGION

Weather in the Eastern Region was dominated by killing frosts occurring overnight Wednesday and Thursday. Scattered showers with minimal accumulations also occurred in some areas both during the week and on the weekend. Cereal harvesting

is complete with spring wheat yields ranging from 25 to 60 bushels per acre, barley yields of 40 to 60 bushels per acre and oat yields of 50 to 100 bushels per acre.

Canola harvesting is 90 to 100 per cent complete. Yield reports continue to be in the 15 to 45 bushels per acre range. Overall quality is rated as average. The mid-week frost triggered final leaf drop in soybean stand and soybean harvesting became widespread in the second half of last week with up to 25 per cent of acres harvested in some districts. Yields range from 10 to 40 bushels per acre. Quality is noted as average with generally smaller seed size.

Early-seeded sunflowers were either at or close to the R9 growth stage when the frost occurred; some fields had already been desiccated. Late seeded fields ranged from mid R8 to early R9 stage. The frost only partially affected sunflower leaves and stems. Corn growth stage ranged from half to three-quarter milk line to early R6 black layer prior to the frost. Leaves were killed by the frost and some kernels are showing evidence of premature black line development.

Winter wheat seeding is nearing completion. Fall fieldwork is 75 per cent complete. Fall anhydrous applications have been delayed until cooler weather and some rainfall occur.

Hayfield conditions range from poor to good while pasture-land conditions range from poor to fair. Both hay and pastures are noted to be very dry. Second cut is winding down. Corn silage harvest is in progress. Some producers are starting to supplemental feed cattle on pasture and dugouts are noted as having low water levels.

INTERLAKE REGION

Cool weather prevailed during the past week with frost occurring on Thursday morning with temperatures ranging from -1 to -3.7 C. Scatttered showers fell on some parts of the region over the weekend with minimal accumulations of two or three millimetres.

Harvesting of canola and cereals is nearing completion. Flax and soybeans are still in the fields waiting for the crop to mature. Soybeans have been testing 13 to 16 per cent moisture in early harvest samples with high levels of green seed. Fall tillage continues although rain would improve conditions. Winter wheat crops have emerged with some at the two-leaf stage. Seeded acreage is expected to be above normal.

Corn and greenfeed crops had visual wilting symptoms on Friday due to frost damage. Several samples of millet and barley cut after the frost have tested positive for nitrates. Harvest of corn silage and greenfeed crops is progressing. Greenfeed yields on late seeded crops are reported at two to three tons per acre.

Pasture conditions are poor due to dry conditions. Supplemental feeding is being reported across the region.

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