Crop Report: Issue 24, October 14, 2014

  • Favourable weather conditions allowed for good harvest progress across most of Manitoba.
  • Provincially, harvest of spring cereals is estimated over 90% complete, canola at 85% complete, flax 65% complete, edible beans 70% complete, soybeans 60 to 65% complete, sunflowers 45% complete and grain corn 5% complete.
  • Winter wheat is emerging with excellent germination and stand establishment reported.
  • Fall field work, including fall fertilizer applications, tillage, baling of straw, and soil testing is on-going.

Southwest Region

The Southwest Region saw above normal temperatures with no precipitation. Frost occurred over several mornings with temperatures reaching -6 degrees Celsius; no damage reported as crops are mature.

Good harvest progress was made over the past week, although much of the harvested crop was taken off at damp and tough moisture levels. Cereal harvest is estimated at 80 to 85% complete. Minimal acres of oats have been harvested to date; however, early reports indicate good bushel weights and above average yields. Quality loss is noted in most spring wheat samples.
Canola harvest is 70 to 75% complete. Canola has cured well after the recent rains with no significant issues with green seed. Generally, above average yields are reported.

The majority of soybeans have reached physiological maturity and significant amounts of harvesting is done in the southern areas of the region. Approximately 30 to 40% soybeans are harvested in southern parts of the southwest region with average to above average yields. The odd soybean field is harvested north of Highway #1. Sunflower and grain corn are near to mature but no reports of harvesting yet.

Top soil moisture conditions are rated as fair to dry. Fall field operations are well underway.
The majority of the second cut of alfalfa is being harvested. Silage operations in barley and corn are ongoing with average yields reported. Cattle continue to be moved to harvested crop residue for grazing, with winter born calves being weaned.

Northwest Region

Cooler conditions and snow prevailed at the beginning of the week in the Northwest Region, but a return to good weather for the rest of the reporting period aided harvest operations. Some producers have completed harvest. However, there are localized areas north of Roblin, as well as in the Ste Rose and McCreary areas, where producers are still challenged with wet field conditions. These areas still need another couple of weeks of good harvest weather to complete combining.
The wheat harvest is approximately 95% complete in most areas of the region with the exception of localized wetter areas where it is estimated that only 50% of the wheat is combined. Reported wheat yields range between 40 to 70 bu/acre of average quality grain.
About 90% of the canola crop is swathed and 60 to 100% is combined. Reported canola yields range from 35 bu/acre to over 50 bu/acre. The quality of canola harvested to date is reported to be good; however, some is being taken off tough.
Harvest of soybean and flax acres is well underway in the southern areas of the region and to a lesser degree in the Swan River area. Harvest of field peas is generally complete with an average yield of 40 bu/acre and good quality. Tillage operations took place in many parts of the region. Another week of favorable weather would allow most producers to finish this year’s harvest.
Greenfeed harvest is continuing with improved drying conditions. All haying operations are nearly complete with very little native hay harvested this year.

Central Region

Average to above average temperatures, fair drying conditions and minimal rain allowed for reasonable harvest progress in the Central Region. Light frosts continue, and almost all areas have received a killing frost. Harvest is reported as 85% complete or more, dependent on field conditions and percentage of longer season crops. The northwest part of the region lags behind due to late seeding and wet conditions throughout the growing season.
There are still a few cereal fields to be harvested, as focus has switched to other crop types such as soybeans. Downgrading factors in cereals include sprouting, mildew, and to a lesser extent fusarium damaged kernels and ergot. Yields are above average.
Most canola is harvested with only a few fields remaining. Good yields and quality reported with most in the 40 to 45 bu/acre range and higher. Where heavy rains caused the most damage, yields are lower at 15 to 20 bu/acre. Quality is good.
Soybean harvest continues in all parts of the region, and is close to complete. Yields are reported in the 25 to 55 bu/acre range; average is estimated at 35 bu/acre. Later seeded and longer maturity varieties seem to have benefited from the late season rain. Moisture ranges from 12 to 15%. Some green beans are evident in harvested samples, especially where light frost occurred several weeks ago; however, no significant concerns at this point.
Edible bean harvest continues and is close to wrapping up. Yield and quality is good. Some sunflowers are harvested; moisture levels between 16 to 20% require drying. No yield reports to date. Early grain corn harvest started, with yield reports to date in the 100 to 140 bu/acre range. Early reports put moisture levels at 20 to 28%. Many producers will wait for moisture levels to decline to limit drying costs. Killing frosts are welcome. Test weights are lower than last year. Silage corn harvest continues and is close to complete.
Fewer acres of winter cereals were seeded, in part due to the later harvest. Acres seeded are emerging well due to the excellent soil moisture conditions.
Fall field work is progressing. Soil testing continues. Early soil test reports indicate low nitrate levels and declining phosphorous levels. While the focus has been on tillage, fertilizer application has also begun. Ammonia applications continue, and many acres should be covered this week and into next, as long as the weather cooperates. Broadcast and banding of phosphate in preparation for next year’s soybean crop also continues.
Straw baling is in progress and forage testing is ongoing. Pasture production is slow, with some supplemental feeding taking place. Some weaning of spring calves is taking place. A few producers are still working at making hay. Most producers in southern areas expect to have adequate hay for the winter, with some small amounts of surplus reported. Some producers in the northwest face less than adequate supplies.

Eastern Region

Recorded rainfall in the Eastern Region ranged from 1 to 6 mm this past week. Harvest progress has been sporadic due to rainfall coupled with cooler temperatures and frequent cloud cover. As well, the shorter days decrease the amount of time in the day for harvesting. The harvest pace picked up towards the end of the week and over the weekend; producers are hoping to get significant harvest done over the next few days.
Spring wheat yields are reported in the 60 to 80 bu/acre range and oat yields are in the 100+ bu/acre range.
Harvest progress in canola has been the most impaired by the poor weather conditions as swaths are not dry enough. Straight cut fields were easier to deal with from a seed moisture content perspective. Canola yields range from 30 to 50 bu/acre.
Producers are making good headway in soybean harvest with reports of some nearing completion. Yields reported are in the 25 to over 45 bu/acre range.
Corn is progressing with fields at physiological maturity. No harvest is reported, unless it has been chopped for silage. Sunflowers are in the R9 (mature) stage.
Winter wheat fields planted on early harvested canola are looking very good and are in the 2 to 3 leaf stage. Significant amounts of winter wheat in the northern parts of the region are planted into stubble other than canola, or in black fields.
Field work is also delayed because of the weather but continues whenever possible. Soils are on the moist side meaning any precipitation interferes with tillage.
Pastures are still doing well, and some producers are using regrowth on hay fields. Producers are starting to ship calves and open cows to market. Winter feed stocks are rated as adequate with a 20% surplus for hay stocks.

Interlake Region

Warmer temperatures and drier conditions were felt throughout the Interlake Region towards the end of last week. Scattered showers resulted in trace amounts up to 8 mm of precipitation. However, in some areas producers were able to continue harvesting. Estimated harvest progress is 80% complete.
Spring wheat fields remaining to be harvested can still be found throughout the region. Canola fields continue to be harvested with acres dwindling down to trace amounts remaining. Soybean harvest is well underway with good yields and moisture levels reported. Corn is still not ready for harvest due to high moisture levels. Alfalfa seed harvest is ongoing with many acres harvested in the last couple of days.
Fall tillage continues with producers able to cross fields and in some areas, a second round of tillage is occurring. Some fields in the north Interlake are going to have to wait for the frost to settle into the soil to make it passable to continue harvest.
Pasture conditions are fair. Producers in some areas have to supplement feed the livestock on pastures. Livestock are slowly being moved to winter grounds. Producers are moving hay bales home.