Manitoba’s sunflower and grain corn harvest stalled the most
By Top Crop Manager
Manitoba’s overall crop harvest progress is at 97 per cent complete, according to the latest provincial crop report.
The month of October saw varied harvest progress across crops. Winter wheat, fall rye, field pea, spring wheat, barley and oat were all 95 to 100 per cent harvested before October started. However, only half of flax and soybean crop were harvested at the beginning of October. By the end of October, the rest of the flax and soybean were harvested.
Overall, flax, soybean, sunflower and grain corn showed the most harvest progress in October. Under 10 per cent of sunflower and grain corn crop was harvested at the start of the month and both crops continue to see some delays. As of Oct. 29, only 80 per cent of sunflowers and 61 per cent of grain corn has been harvested. The delayed harvest for these two crops is due mostly to high percent seed moisture and limits to what can be harvested in a day given shorter days and the capacity of producers’ dryer systems.
Across the regions, dry conditions during the summer and early wet cool weather at the start of harvest characterized the growing season. Areas that saw timely rains did not suffer any losses to yield, whereas soybean and grain corn crop that didn’t receive moisture saw the biggest hits to yield.
A recent break in the weather has allowed producers to finish up harvest across the province. While the late moisture and delayed harvest has been frustrating, the replenishment of moisture in the soil is seen as a benefit for next year.
A notable highlight from Manitoba Agriculture’s 2018 Crop Report summary includes the hail events that occurred in Central region, resulting in crop damage and impacting yields. Many fields were written off and reseeded due to the severity of the damage. Other hail storm events hit different areas at different times with lesser overall impact, including some in the Interlake region.
Within the Central region, canola yields were good despite various season struggles such as the drier weather conditions. Some fields were reseeded due to the heavy flea beetle pressure, dry soil conditions, poor seedbed, or uneven germination. Blackleg was noted in many fields, but not considered a major yield limitation this year. Sclerotinia was present in some fields but at low levels given the predominantly dry conditions. Yields varied widely depending on moisture ranging from 25 to 60 bu/ac, averaging 35 to 45 bu/ac. Quality is excellent with the crop grading 1CAN in the Central region, whereas in other regions some canola has dipped to crop grading #2. The reduced quality is mostly a result of green seed issues in late seeded canola.
Overall, Manitoba’s harvest had a strong start with almost half of the crops harvested by the beginning of September but slowed and was prolonged throughout the month of October. The full regional breakdown for the province’s harvest progress is available in Manitoba Agriculture’s 2018 Crop Report Summary.