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Crop Report – for Sep. 3, 2009

SOUTHWEST

Harvesting of winter cereals continues across the region with reports of average to above-average yields and good quality; weather permitting, most growers should complete harvest of those crops by the end of the week. Barley and wheat harvests have also started with average yields and good quality reported. Desiccation and swathing of spring cereals continues.

Several producers have been cutting canola. With good weather, most canola south of Highway 1 will be in the swath by week’s end. North of Hwy. 1, some canola fields still require about one more week to ripen. Pea harvest is 70 per cent complete with yields average to above average and good quality. Sunflowers continue to bloom. Corn continues in the seed-fill stage with good cob development.

Recent rainfall has helped pastures that weren’t overgrazed; areas that missed the rains or were overgrazed may need supplemental feed soon. Feed supplies still remain a concern.

NORTHWEST

Winter wheat harvest is 60 to 70 per cent complete with average yields being reported. A few fields of spring wheat have been swathed, particularly north of Ste. Rose. Spring wheat desiccation continues. If weather conditions are good some harvest operations should get underway by the weekend. Dry conditions in areas including the Swan Valley may impact yield potential.

Cutting of canola will continue this week. Some canola fields still require one to two more weeks to mature. Cereal silage harvest is in full swing with yields ranging from average to above average.

Pasture conditions have improved with recent rains, except in the region’s east, which is suffering from excess moisture. Producers continue to struggle to put up native hay.

CENTRAL

Winter wheat harvest is complete; the last fields combined had lower grades due to sprouting. Winter cereal seeding has started in the Portage area.

A small amount of spring wheat has been harvested with yields being reported at 45-50 bushels per acre. Barley is yielding 80 bu./ac.; with recent rains, some downgrading has occurred. Canola is being swathed; staging of swathing has been a challenge due to sclerotinia infection.

Early-maturing varieties of edible beans are showing yellowing on leaves and pods. White mould is evident in edible beans and soybeans.

Soybean aphid numbers have increased recently, but with cooler weather over the past week and soybeans maturing, the risk is lessening.

Second-cut alfalfa is still taking place.

EAST

Limited harvesting of winter wheat occurred last week due to intermittent rainfall and wet field conditions. Progress in early-seeded barley was also delayed. Early-seeded wheat and oats continue to mature. Limited swathing of canola occurred, although as much as 50 per cent of the crop was at the appropriate stage. Staging of canola swathing has been difficult due to sclerotinia infection and uneven development. Soybeans are in the R5 growth stage; white mould is evident in some stands. Sunflowers vary from late R5 to R6. Corn is in the blister growth stage. Harvesting work is expected to become general this week as fields become passable.

Hayfield conditions are rated as fair, with pasture conditions rated as good. Limited progress was made in haying last week and wet weather continued to deteriorate any second-cut hay remaining on the ground.

Feed supplies remain a concern as a result of reduced first-and second-cut hay yields, especially in the northeast of the region.

INTERLAKE

Precipitation over the past week has resulted in field travel becoming increasingly difficult. Excess moisture in some areas is hampering harvest operations for annual crops, as well as forage seed fields and hayfields.

Winter wheat harvest is progressing in the south Interlake with yields ranging from 70 to 80 bu./ac. Downgrading has occurred in some samples due to fusarium head blight infection and sprouting. Canola swathing has started with sclerotina damage evident in some fields. Spring wheat is being desiccated.

Timothy seed fields are being harvested. Shelling is evident in areas of aggressive rainfall, combined with overmaturity.

Hay harvest is resuming with late first cut in some areas and second cut in others. Access to some fields is still limited due to excess moisture. Native hay harvest is variable with challenges close to water bodies and tributaries. Hay that has been harvested recently is of poorer quality due to rain on swaths and being baled in high humidity and poor drying conditions.

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