Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Prairie seeding wrapping up rapidly

After a gruelling spring, Prairie grain growers have caught up.

All three Prairie provinces are reporting virtual completion of seeding in their latest crop reports.

Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development says 97 per cent of the crop is in the ground, which is in line with the long-term-average.

Emergence is estimated at 63 per cent, ahead of last year’s 55 per cent. Precipitation was general throughout Alberta. It’s expected that one per cent of the province’s acres won’t be seeded due to excessive moisture, particularly in the area northwest of Edmonton.

Crop spraying progress in the province averaged 8.3 per cent completed. The impact of insect populations has been minimal thus far this year, AARD added.

With the precipitation, surface soil moisture conditions have improved in all regions of Alberta with the exception of the northeast. Provincially, 83 per cent of the province is rated good/excellent. Regionally, only the northeast, at 58 per cent good/excellent, is rated less than 90 per cent for surface moisture.

Hay and pasture crops are in good condition, reflecting the moisture received over the past 10 days. Some reductions to dryland first-cut hay yields are expected in southern Alberta due to the prolonged dry conditions this spring. Provincially, hay and pastures are rated one per cent poor, 18 per cent fair, 62 per cent good and 19 per cent excellent.

The Saskatchewan ministry of agriculture’s latest report says 96 per cent of the 2013 crop is in the ground, significantly above the five-year (2008 to 2012) average of 89 per cent seeded for this time of year.

One year ago, 96 per cent of the 2012 crop had been seeded. Despite wet field conditions in many areas, emerged crops were in good to excellent condition.

Regionally, 93 per cent of the crop is seeded in the southeast while the remaining regions each have 97 per cent of the crop seeded. Much of the province received significant rainfall which has slowed down field operations. The Kinistino area, southeast of Prince Albert, reported the greatest amount of rainfall at 93 mm.

Across Saskatchewan, topsoil moisture on crop land is rated as 10 per cent surplus, 84 per cent adequate and six per cent short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as four per cent surplus, 86 per cent adequate and 10 per cent short.

The majority of fall cereals are in the tillering to jointed stages of crop development while most spring cereals are in the emerging to tillering stages. The majority of pulse crops are emerging and in the vegetative stages and flax crops are mostly in the pre-emergent or emerging crop stages. Canola and mustard crops are emerging or at the seedling stage of crop development.

Some reported crop damage this week was due to localized flooding, frost and insect damage from flea beetles, cutworms and pea leaf weevil. Farmers are busy finishing seeding and controlling weeds.

Seeding progress in Manitoba is estimated to be 94 per cent complete. There remain some areas in the southwest and central regions where seeding is not as advanced.

However, progress was made over the past week and favourable weather conditions will allow producers to continue seeding, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives reported.

Stand establishment is generally rated as good to excellent for most crop types. However, the excess moisture in some areas did impact crop emergence and plant stands, mainly in the low areas of the fields. Weed control is a priority for producers as crops continue to advance.

Increased flea beetle activity in the earliest-seeded canola fields has been reported. — Network

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