Hail takes a toll on southern Manitoba crops

Recovery depends on the extent of damage and crop stage. Some farmers are re-seeding

The Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation (MASC) is still assessing hail claims from an intense thunder storm that swept across much of southwest and south-central Manitoba the evening of June 14.

As of press time Monday morning MASC had received 250 spot loss hail claims and 120 re-seeding claims as a result of hail damage, David Koroscil, MASC’s claims manager said in an interview.

The three hot spots for hail damage to crops are the Minto-Fairfax area, Ninette and Manitou, he said.

Up to baseball sized hail damaged property and crops June 15. High winds knocked over buildings, grain bins and trees, and a tornado touched down near Waskada.

An intense thunderstorm June 14 roared across southwestern and south-central Manitoba June 14 leaving a path of crop and property damage from hail and strong winds. Four of Chris McCallister’s bins were toppled north of Portage la Prairie.
photo: Chris McCallister

It’s always tricky assessing hail damage early in the growing season and so close to MASC’s June 20 seeding deadline.

Farmers who want to re-seed before the deadline might have to leave check strips for MASC adjuster to assess the damage, Koroscil said.

“We had some farmers say their fields were so damaged it looks like they’ve been cultivated,” he said.

Depending on the amount of damage some cereal crops can recover if the growing point is still below the soil surface, Anne Kirk, Manitoba Agriculture’s cereal specialist said in an interview June 15.

In the case of wheat that’s before stem elongation. She said a lot of wheat is already past that point.

Corn’s growing point is above ground at the six leaf stage, she added.

Cool temperatures are best for crop recovery after hail damage, but this week’s forecast was for temperatures in the low 30s Celcius.

Sometimes hail damaged crops can yield well, but maturity is delayed.

Re-seeded crops will be later too, but if they were seeded earlier in the week they’ll be off to a fast start with warm, most soils.

An intense storm that swept across southwestern and south-central Manitoba June 14 damaged crops and property. This is what the approaching storm looked like near Darlingford, Man.
photo: Lissanne Steppler-Frank

About the author

Reporter

Allan Dawson

Allan Dawson is a reporter with the Manitoba Co-operator based near Miami, Man. Covering agriculture since 1980, Dawson has spent most of his career with the Co-operator except for several years with Farmers’ Independent Weekly and before that a Morden-Winkler area radio station.

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