Crop Report 2009
Crop Report for the Period October 13 to 19, 2009
Unfavourable weather conditions during the past few weeks have stalled harvest operations in the province, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture's weekly Crop Report.
Harvest is approximately 77 per cent complete. The five year average (2004-2008) for this time of year is 94 per cent complete. Last year at this time, Saskatchewan farmers had 97 per cent of the crop in the bin. Farmers are trying to combine tough and damp crops when they can, which is sometimes only an hour or two a day. Fourteen per cent of the crops are in the swath and six per cent are ready to straight-combine.
Seventy-six per cent of the spring wheat, 87 per cent of the durum, 59 per cent of the oats, 85 per cent of the barley, 30 per cent of the flax, 66 per cent of the canola, 87 per cent of the mustard, 50 per cent of the canary seed, 80 per cent of the chickpeas and two per cent of the sunflowers have been combined. All regions of the province still have crop in the field.
Province-wide, cropland topsoil moisture is rated as 20 per cent surplus, 63 per cent adequate, 16 per cent short and one per cent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture conditions are rated as eight per cent surplus, 66 per cent adequate, 21 per cent short and five per cent very short.
Snow, rain and wind were the major causes of crop damage last week. The recent weather conditions have caused bleaching, sprouting, lodging and shattering. There are also reports of wildlife damage (caused primarily by geese) in the swaths. Where possible, farmers are trying to control weeds, hauling grain and bales, fixing fences and testing soil.
Producers are doing what they can to get the crop off the field.
Please note: The last regular Crop Report will be next week (October 29). A FINAL Crop Report will be released on November 12. If needed, a supplementary Crop Report may be compiled in December to capture additional information.
Southeastern Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 1, 2, and 3ASE)
The weather conditions were cool and damp during the week, and little progress was made on harvest or other fall operations. Temperatures on the weekend were more seasonal. Most areas in the region reported rain and snow. Precipitation ranged from nil to 20 mm. The Manor and Moosomin areas received 20 mm. Many other areas recorded moisture above 10 mm. Average precipitation for CD 1A was 12 mm; CD 1B, 10 mm; CD 2A, 5 mm; CD 2B, 4 mm and CD 3ASE, 4 mm. Heavy, wet snow fell in the Moosomin area.
Cropland topsoil moisture conditions are rated as 21 per cent surplus, 73 per cent adequate and six per cent short. Hay and pasture topsoil moisture conditions are sitting at six per cent surplus, 87 per cent adequate and seven per cent short.
Most of the crop damage was caused by wind, rain and snow, which resulted in bleaching, lodging and shattering.
A few combines were rolling and taking tough/damp grain and putting it in aeration and dryers, if available. The majority of the fields with crop still left have not seen a combine since September 30. Most crop reporters are indicating that fall weed control activities have passed. There was little activity on farms, with the exception of hauling bales and bringing the cattle home from pasture. Some crop reporters are wondering if they will be combining next spring or if they can get the crop in the bin this fall.
Southwestern Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 3ASW, 3AN, 3B and 4)
Most of the week was cool and damp, with varying amounts of moisture. Precipitation ranged from nil to 13 mm. Crop District 3SAW averaged 5 mm of precipitation; CD 3AN, 5 mm; CD 3BS, 4 mm; CD 3BN, 4 mm; CD 4A, 7 mm and 4B, 5 mm. The Shaunavon area received 13 mm, while the Glentworth and Coderre areas received 11 and 10 mm, respectively.
Cropland topsoil moisture conditions are reported as, 69 per cent adequate, 28 per cent short and three per cent very short. Topsoil moisture conditions on hay land and pasture are rated as 60 per cent adequate, 27 per cent short and 14 per cent very short.
Bleaching, sprouting and shattering accounted for the majority of the damage to the crops still in the field.
While awaiting the chance to finish harvesting, farmers are fencing and hauling bales and cattle. The wet conditions have limited activities in the field. Soft ground is making it difficult to haul grain during the day. There are worries that some of the crop will be left in the field until next spring, or maybe even until conditions are more cold and dry. There are a few reports of fall weed control application. It is mostly flax and canaryseed are left to harvest.
East-Central Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 5 and 6A)
The region experienced damp conditions throughout most of the week. Precipitation ranged from nil to 13 mm, with most areas receiving less than 10 mm. CD 5A received an average of 3 mm. CDs 5B and 6A received 5 mm. The Jansen and Humboldt areas received 13 mm, while the Kelvington area received 11 mm.
Cropland topsoil moisture conditions are reported as 31 per cent surplus and 69 per cent adequate. Topsoil moisture conditions on hay land and pasture are rated as nine per cent surplus, 85 per cent adequate and seven per cent short.
Many areas in the region reported crop damage due to the wet conditions and wind. Bleaching, lodging, sprouting and shattering are the major concerns. Geese are causing crop damage as well.
There were some combines going on the weekend thanks to the warmer weather. There are reports of some canaryseed being combined. Some canola crops are testing 14 to 16 per cent moisture and higher. These crops will require close monitoring in the bin. There were reports of crops being combined at over 20 per cent moisture and others that did not register on the moisture meter. Reports from the Semans area noted oats testing 16 per cent, flax 12 to 13 per cent and canola 13 per cent. Some fall fertilizing is taking place. Farmers are deciding which crops to harvest now based on which ones will best withstand being left out over winter.
Farmers are busy trying to harvest, monitoring tough grain and trying to haul bales.
West-Central Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 6B and 7)
The week was cool, cloudy and snowy. Precipitation varied ranging from 3 to 24 mm. CD 6B averaged 10 mm; CD 7A, 7 mm and CD 7B, 16 mm. The Major area received 24 mm, while the Luseland and Denzil areas received 20mm. Many areas received between 10 and 20 mm.
Cropland topsoil moisture conditions are reported as three per cent surplus, 61 per cent adequate, 34 per cent short and three per cent very short. Forty-six per cent is rated as short in CD 7A. Topsoil moisture conditions on hay land and pasture are rated as two per cent surplus, 54 per cent adequate, 41 per cent short and two per cent very short. Sixty-six per cent is rated as short in CD 7A.
Wind and rain were the major causes of crop damage in the region. Lodging, bleaching, sprouting and shattering are causing downgrading and crop loss. There was some localized flooding in the Hanley area.
Harvesting equipment was absent from most fields again this past week. Some farmers were harvesting tough and damp grain. Most crops are testing 19 to 20 per cent moisture and above. Some farmers are hauling bales and manure, although fields are very soft which makes movement difficult. There are a few reports of fall fertilizing. Fall activities are occurring when weather permits. Cattle are being fed in the yard as crop residue grazing cannot take place until the crop comes off the field. There was a little progress made in combining in some areas, but it was not long before the rain and snow brought it to a halt.
Northeastern Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 8 and 9AE)
The northeast region was overcast and cool for most of the week. Precipitation varied from 4 to 18 mm. CD 8A averaged 9 mm, with the Porcupine Plain and Tisdale areas receiving 11 and 12 mm, respectively. CD 8B reported an average of 7 mm, with the Melfort area recording 13 mm. The Prince Albert area received 18 mm.
Top soil is wet. Cropland topsoil moisture is reported as 59 per cent surplus, 34 per cent adequate and seven per cent short. Topsoil moisture on hay land and pasture is rated as 64 per cent surplus, 32 per cent adequate and four per cent very short.
Wind, rain and snow were the major causes of crop damage. Crops still in the field are lodging, bleaching and sprouting, which will result in downgrading. Geese are causing crop damage in the Hoey area.
The cool, wet weather this week brought harvest to a near halt. Farmers with grain dryers were able to combine some crops, but grain trucks could not drive through the fields without getting stuck. In some areas, the combines were driving to the road to fill the trucks, slowing things down even more. There were a few combines rolling from October 14 to 17. There is still a lot of crop left out in the field.
Northwestern Saskatchewan (Crop Districts 9AW and 9B)
Cloudy and cool weather made for poor drying conditions during the majority of the week. Most areas reported precipitation. The average precipitation in CD 9AW was 16 mm and 10 mm in CD 9B. The Glaslyn and Spiritwood areas recorded 28 and 26 mm, respectively. Most areas reported more than 10 mm of moisture.
Cropland topsoil moisture conditions are reported as 11 per cent surplus, 56 per cent adequate, 32 per cent short and one per cent very short. Topsoil moisture conditions on hay land and pasture are rated as 51 per cent adequate, 45 per cent short and four per cent very short.
Wet and windy conditions caused the crop damage in the region this past week. Bleaching, sprouting and lodging are causing concerns.
Farmers are trying to harvest, haul bales, apply fall fertilizer, haul cattle and repair fences when weather permits. Some combines made it into the fields between October 17 and 19. Farmers are combining tough/damp grain and drying it. Many farmers are putting their combines in the field as soon as they are sure the grain can be stored and managed at an acceptable moisture level.
It has been a ‘long haul' for Saskatchewan farmers this year, and there is still a lot of crop in the field. All the best to those trying to complete harvest and finish their fall farm activities.