Crop Report: Issue 19, September 9, 2013


Weekly Provincial Summary

  • Favourable weather conditions allowed harvest operations to continue across Manitoba.
  • Winter wheat harvest is nearing completion while harvest of spring wheat, barley,
    oats, and canola crops continues.  Yields remain average to above average with good quality
  • Corn and soybean development continues to advance with most acres still requiring a few more weeks of frost-free weather to reach maturity.
  • Winter wheat seeding is underway in most areas of Manitoba.


Southwest Region

Above normal temperatures and only scattered showers resulted in good harvest progress made
throughout much of the Southwest Region this past week.
The spring cereal harvest is general throughout much of the region. Yield reports continue to
come in well above average with spring wheat yields averaging 45 to 65 bu/acre with above
average bushel weights.  Most spring wheat is grading either a No. 1 or 2 with protein levels
trending lower and averaging between 12 and 13%. Barley yields are also well above average
with most fields averaging between 65 to 90 bu/acre with above average bushel weights and
lower protein levels. The oat harvest is just beginning with initial yield reports also
coming in at well above average levels, in the 90 to 150 bu/acre range, with above average
bushel weights.
The majority of the canola crop is swathed with only limited harvesting occurring to date.
Initial yield reports for canola are more variable and are ranging from 30 to 65 bu/acre.
Disease, early season insect damage and frost injury are the main reasons for the lower
yields in some fields. Flax fields continue to ripen with pre-harvest desiccation becoming
general in most areas. The field pea harvest is in its final stages with generally above
average yields reported, although there are some lower yields noted on fields with a frequent
history of field peas.
Corn and soybeans continue to benefit from the warmer temperatures and have seen crop
maturities advance over last week. The majority of soybeans are in the R6 stage of
development where full seed development is beginning to occur within the top portion of the
plant. Early maturing varieties in southern portions of the region are seeing pod color
change (R7). Most corn crops are in the early milk stage of development (R3) with some of the
earlier seeded fields into the dough stage (R4). Most sunflowers have completed flowering
with the majority of the crop in the R7 stage of development where the back of the heads
begin to turn a pale yellow.
Winter wheat and fall rye seeding increased slightly over last week with the increase in
harvested acres; however, many growers are concerned with the dry and hard soil conditions
and are delaying planting.
Insect activity over last week was again limited to grasshoppers with the highest numbers
reported in eastern and central areas however they are becoming general throughout the
The second cut alfalfa harvest is 75 to 80% complete with the remainder of the crop to be
harvested after the first fall frost. Greenfeed and silage harvest is almost complete. Slough
and marsh hay continue to be harvested to supplement winter feed supplies across the region.
Pasture conditions have generally stabilized with the cool temperatures and spotty showers. 
Producers are utilizing harvested crop stubble as supplemental pasture. Water levels in
sloughs and dugouts are at 50 to 60% of capacity in northern and central regions and 75 to
80% of capacity in southern regions.

Northwest Region

Favorable weather conditions allowed for general harvest operations through the Northwest
Region for most of the week. Some isolated light showers over Thursday night delayed harvest
for a short time around Gilbert Plains and parts of the Swan Valley area.
Regionally, combining is completed on approximately 25% of total acres. Preharvest herbicide
treatments are continuing. An estimated 45% of canola acres are in swath and 20% is combined.
Spring wheat is 30% combined, 20% is swathed and approximately 40% is ready for straight
combining. As more acres are harvested, reported yields for spring wheat range from 30 to 80
bu/acre, with quality being very good and protein content averaging 13.5%. As spring wheat
harvest progresses, reported incidence of ergot is low and appears to be limited to earliest
harvested samples. Oat yields range from 70 to140 bu/acre and from 15 to 60 bu/acre for
canola. The lower yields are where early season excess moisture impacted the earliest seeded
crops, including some fields in the Swan Valley area, Dauphin and more generally through
Sifton, Winnipegosis, Ethelbert and The Pas.
Soybeans are mostly in R6 and R7 stages; crop staging and condition is better through the
Dauphin and Ste Rose areas where early maturing varieties are showing color change.  White
mould is present in a number of soybean fields.
Some late second cut forage harvest is completed. Greenfeed harvest is reaching completion
with yields above average. Favorable weather has dried more native hay lands and harvest
continues. With the very good harvest conditions, straw baling, removal and field work is
also being completed. Straw quality is excellent. Pastures conditions are rated 40% good, 45%
fair and 15% poor. Dugout water levels are adequate in all areas.

Central Region

Last week in Central Region, produces dealt with the issues that arose from the previous
week's rain, hail and windstorms. Producers were able to harvest the majority of the blown
canola swaths. Estimated hail losses on canola ranged from 20 to 40%. Rainfall amounts over
last week ranged from 0 to 30 mm in some localized locations near Rock Lake, Cartwright,
Glenora and Clearwater. Rainfall will halt harvest progress for a few days.
Across the region, harvest progress is as follows: spring wheat 60 to 100% complete, barley
50 to 100% complete, oats 35 to 100% complete, and canola 30 to 100% complete. Edible bean
harvest is just getting started in the southern part of the region with reports of pinto
beans yielding well above 2000 lbs/acre on the first fields harvested. Harvest of all crop
types will continue this week once drier weather returns.
Yields and quality are good in cereals and oilseeds in the region. Yields for various cereals
and canola are as follows: spring wheat 40 to 80 bu/acre, barley from 75 to 110 bu/acre, oats
from 90 to 160 bu/acre and canola from 25 to 60 bu/acre. A few quality issues reported on
spring wheat with respect to lower protein levels (range from 12 to 14%) and downgrading to
#2 Canada due to color loss as a result of rain.
Soybeans still need a few weeks of frost free weather to mature and fill properly. The
earliest fields in the southern part of the region are 7 to 10 days away from harvest;
however, areas in the western part of the region are further behind and need at least 15 to
20 days of frost free weather in order to reach maturity. Grain corn growth ranges from R4
dough stage to early R5 dent stage. A few more weeks of frost free weather is need.
Winter wheat seeding is occurring in the south and western part of the region where the soil
conditions are good for planting and where fields are accessible as canola harvest is
completed. Recent rains and warm weather will be beneficial for germination.
Haying continues with a number of producers trying to finish up with second cut. Yields are
expected to be average for most areas. Winter feed supplies will be inadequate for some
producers. Dugouts are full.

Eastern Region

Rainfall amounts range from 2 to 16 mm last week in the Eastern Region due to spotty showers.
Some individual farming operations are nearing 60% complete with their harvest operations. 
Average yields for the region are as follows: winter wheat 70 to 80 bu/acre, spring wheat 45
to 60 bu/acre, barley 85 bu/acre, oats 100 to 125 bu/acre and canola 40 bu/acre. Soybean
development is in the late R6 to fully R7 stage; the most advanced fields are the short
seasoned varieties with up to 40 to 50% brown pod. Corn ranges in development from dough (R4)
to mid dent with the milk line moving down the kernel. Sunflower staging is full R7 to early
In central and northern areas of the Eastern Region, winter wheat seeding is underway.  Some
producers note dry seedbed conditions again this year.
Grasshoppers continue to be an issue in the southern areas of the region.
Winter feed supply status has hay at 5 to 10% surplus, 80 to 90% adequate, and 5 to 10%
inadequate; straw supplies at 100% surplus; greenfeed at 100% adequate and feed grains at 5
to 10% surplus, 80 to 90% adequate and 5 to 10% inadequate. Pasture conditions in the region
are rated as 60% good, 30% fair and 10% poor in the region. Livestock water, including
dugouts, is rated at 100% adequate.

Interlake Region

Warm and dry conditions prevailed in the Interlake Region allowing for good harvest progress.
Some hail damage was reported from the August 30 storms. Some isolated showers passed through
southern portions of the region on Friday.
Harvest progress has been excellent with excellent yields reported. Cereal harvest is 75%
complete while canola harvest at 50% complete. Canola swathing is delayed on some fields due
to green seed content. These crops are slow to ripen and are causing harvest delays.
Soybean maturity advanced with harvest quickly approaching in the south Interlake. Soybeans
in the north Interlake started to change color over the weekend and are advancing rapidly due
to dry conditions.
Harvesting of bird’s foot trefoil is general with certain fields completed while others are
yet to be swathed. Hot conditions are challenging as producers try to avoid pod shattering.
Winter wheat seeding is underway, although some producers are waiting for improvement in soil
moisture conditions as soils are dry across the region. Late canola harvest will also affect
the number of acres seeded to winter wheat. Tillage operations are underway on winter wheat
and spring cereal stubble.
Hay harvest continues with native hay and second cut of alfalfa. Greenfeed harvest is general
with good to excellent yields reported. Hay supplies should be adequate on most farms,
although localized shortages may occur.
Pasture conditions are average with many producers supplementing pastures by feeding. Dry
conditions hindered regrowth in most areas; however, the Grahamdale and Gypsumville area is
experiencing excess moisture causing pasture shortfalls.