By Top Crop Manager
The latest crop report shows improvements in Saskatchewan and Alberta. However, Manitoba continues to be hit with challenges from excess rainfall and extreme weather.
Manitoba’s seeding has been behind schedule this year, and was last reported at 93 per cent complete last week. The crop report is no longer tracking seeding. However, despite challenges, spraying progress has advanced and is nearing completion. Aerial application is widespread for insect control, with the focus shifting from flea beetles to grasshoppers. Humid and warm conditions are ideal for fusarium and sclerotinia (white mould) disease development this year, and many farmers and retailers are preparing to spray fungicides on wheat, canola and peas (for mycosphaerella) when conditions per bit and crop development advances.
Earlier-seeded spring wheat crops are beginning to flower, with most at flag leaf. Some farms are choosing to spray fungicide to protect the flag leaf, and will spray again at head emergence for fusarium protection. FHB risk maps showed variable to low risk, but an increase is expected in the coming days. Only 10 per cent of spring wheat crops are rated as being in poor condition, with a combined 90 per cent in good or excellent condition. Fall rye is in the grain-fill stage. Barley and rye are in the elongation phase, while some oat crops appear “noticeably stressed” from wet conditions.
Canola crops are extremely variable in many districts due to variance in seeding date, combined with flea beetle pressure, reseeding and other weather events. Water-stress is causing leaf-cupping in some crops on slower-draining land. Flea beetle insecticide application has wrapped up. Flax crops are fewer than expected, but generally in good condition. Soybean crops are filling in, although in many fields no flowers are visible yet. Iron-deficiency chlorosis has been showing up in soybean crops this past week. Some soybean aphids have been found south of Fannystelle, but no spraying has occurred. Flowering is about to begin in many field peas, and dry edible beans have seen the first pass of weed control completed. | READ MORE
Saskatchewan has varying needs in terms of moisture. Some regions have received extremely high volumes of rain and are experiencing flooding and drowned-out crops, while other areas still need additional rainfall. Conditions remain driest in the west. Both of those conditions have led to slow crop development. As of the week ending June 27, 76 per cent of the fall cereals, 58 per cent of the spring cereals, 46 per cent of the oilseed crops and 69 per cent of the pulse crops are at their normal stages of development for this time of year.
Topsoil moisture ratings dropped slightly this week. Cropland topsoil moisture is rated as nine per cent surplus, 67 per cent adequate, 20 per cent short and four per cent very short. The majority of crop damage this past week was from heat, drying winds, drought, insects, gophers, flooding and hail. Gophers have also become a significant problem, destroying some parts of fields.
Producers are now spraying to control disease in their fields and are spraying the first round of fungicide on crops such as lentils and spring wheat. They are also continuing with herbicide and insecticide applications on competing weeds and insects in their crops. |READ MORE
As of June 27, Alberta crop production is shaping up nicely, with many producers grateful for the June rains after a dry planting season. While growth and development is still described as “modestly behind” previous averages, the conditions of said crops has improved. For the week, 75 per cent of crops are in good or excellent condition, comparable to both the five- and 10-year averages. The south region, however, continues to struggle, with 64.1 per cent of all crops and 61.8 per cent of major crops in good or excellent conditions. Soil moisture is also in a better position than last year, with 76 per cent in good or excellent condition, whereas during last year’s comparable week it was 38 per cent good or fair.
In the south, which has experienced the most adverse conditions for crops and soil moisture, barley and canola rank the lowest for condition of the major crops with oats, pulses, and flax relatively highest. In the central region, crop quality is good to excellent, however lentils, chickpeas and mustard are significantly lower in quality compared to all other crops in the region. Canola is in poorer condition compared to other more excellent-rated crops in the northeast, and gophers are slightly above the threshold and flea beetles are minimal. Major crops are excellent in the northwest, with canola being variable across the region, and no pests above the region’s threshold. The Peace region, where crops are consistently in good condition, is an exception to most of the province’s regions, as canola is the Peace region’s second-highest rated crop for quality.