Thursday, 05 July 2018 10:33

Crops good across Sask.; southwest needs moisture

Written by  Sask. Agriculture
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Across the province, the majority of crops are in good condition and at their normal stages of development for this time of year, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s Weekly Crop Report (June 19-25).

Seventy-six per cent of the oilseeds and fall and spring cereals are at their normal stages of development, while 80 percent of the pulses are at the normal stages of development for this time of year. Sixty-five percent of the spring wheat, 57 percent of the canola, 47 percent of the lentils and 54 percent of the peas are in good condition.
Many areas received rain showers this week, although amounts varied significantly. In some areas in the southwest, the rain has helped replenish top soil moisture. Provincially, topsoil moisture conditions on cropland are rated as two per cent surplus, 64 percent adequate, 30 percent short and four percent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as 55 percent adequate, 35 percent short and 10 percent very short. Topsoil moisture is in shortest supply in the southwest.
Haying operations have started and five percent of the hay crop has been cut and two per cent baled or put into silage. Across the province, quality is rated as eight percent excellent, 44 per cent good, 38 per cent fair and 10 percent poor. Crops, hay and pasture—particularly in the southwestern and west-central regions—are being affected by the dry conditions. Hay yield is expected to be lower than average and pastures are expected to have significantly reduced carrying capacity going into the summer months.
 As well as starting to cut hay, producers are finishing weed control operations. The majority of crop damage this week was due to lack of moisture. Cutworms are still causing damage in some areas.
Southwest Sask.
Spotty rain showers were reported in the region during the past week. Some areas received significant amounts that helped to alleviate stress on crops and pasture; however, more rain is needed in the region to sustain crop and pasture growth. Concerns remain that, if a general rain is not received soon, crop yields will be significantly reduced.
Rainfall in the region ranged from nil to 80 mm in the Vanguard area. The Fife Lake area reported 12 mm, the Limerick area 7 mm, the Mossbank area 16 mm, the Admiral area 20 mm, the Swift Current area 11 mm, the Shaunavon area 33 mm and the Gull Lake area 13 mm. The Vanguard area has received the most precipitation (148 mm) in the region since April 1, while the Gull Lake area has received the least (33 mm). Although recent moisture has helped some areas, most of the region remains very dry. Cropland topsoil moisture is rated as 49 percent adequate, 42 percent short and nine percent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as 36 percent adequate, 43 percent short and 21 percent very short. Crop District 3BS is reporting that 25 per cent of the cropland and 31 percent of the hay land and pasture are very short of topsoil moisture. Crops are heading out and starting to flower. Due to uneven germination, there are various crop growth stages within a field.
Haying is underway in the region. Ten percent of the crop is cut and five per cent is baled or put into silage. Hay quality is rated as four percent excellent, 48 percent good, 44 percent fair and four percent poor. Hay yields are well below average in most areas.
The majority of crop damage this past week was due to lack of moisture. With no rain to break down herbicides, there are some reports of crops being damaged by herbicide carryover. Farmers are busy with weed control operations and haying.

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