Crop Report: Issue 12, July 20, 2015


Weekly Provincial Summary

  • Another week of generally good growing conditions continues to advance crops across Manitoba. Localized thunderstorms did result in significant precipitation amounts in some areas of the province, while other areas would still benefit from additional moisture.
  • Disease pressure and insect activity continues to be monitored as the growing season progresses.


Southwest Region

Rainfall was more frequent and widespread, improving crop conditions by bringing much needed moisture to many areas in the Southwest Region. There are some reports of hail damage in Miniota and surrounding area.
Winter wheat is in the soft dough stage with generally low levels of fusarium head blight symptoms noted. Fall rye is in the dough stage with some plant dry down beginning to occur.

Fungicide applications in spring cereals are virtually complete as most crops are fully headed and into grain fill stages of development. Canola crops have generally responded well to last week’s rainfall and warm temperatures. Spraying of reseeded canola fields for sclerotinia was widespread over the past week.

Field peas are in the pod filling stage of development with some early seeded fields beginning to dry down. Most acres are filling very well. Flax is in full flower and fungicide applications are complete.

Soybeans have seen excellent growth and are in the R2 (flowering) to very early R3 (pod initiation) stages of development. Some fungicide applications have occurred in soybeans due to the moist, warm conditions and heavy crop canopies and concerns over white mould development. Most sunflowers are at bud stage, with 5 to 10% of fields just starting to flower.

Cereals are recovering from lodging in some areas; however, many acres remain lodged. Wild oats are emerging above the crop in patches in cereal fields. Cereal armyworm activity continues to be monitored in some fields but natural predators are present. Low bertha armyworm counts indicate a low risk.

Significant rainfall over the region improved moisture conditions for hay fields and pastures. First cut of hay is mostly complete with average to below average yields and good quality. Dugouts are approximately 80% full.


Northwest Region

Unsettled weather over the past week caused localized thunderstorms throughout the entire Northwest Region. Although variable, this resulted in rainfall amounts of 50 to 76 mm in localized parts of the Swan Valley, up to 102 mm in the Roblin area, and 50 to 102 mm in parts of the Ste.Rose and McCreary areas. Hail was reported from the Ste Rose and McCreary areas, but caused minimal damage. Soil moisture conditions throughout most of the Northwest Region improved significantly over the past two weeks.

Approximately 85% of the winter wheat crop is in the dough stage. For spring wheat, about 50% of the crop is at the milk stage with the remaining 50% split evenly between the dough stage and flowering. Canola stands improved significantly over the week as the crop continued to develop rapidly. Approximately 85% of the canola crop is in full bloom with about 15% podded. Cereals in the Northwest Region are reported to be in good to fair condition while canola ranges from very good to poor, mostly because of dry conditions earlier in the season.

Approximately 80% of the corn crop is in the V6 to V13 stage of growth, while for soybeans 95% of the crop is blooming with about 5% of that podded. The flax crop is in full flower with some boll development occurring.

Weed control looks adequate for the most part but wild oat escapes have appeared in some wheat fields. Most fungicide applications have been completed on those fields requiring treatment. Insect activity throughout the region is minimal, although producers are continuing to scout canola crops for lygus bug and diamondback larva activity. There are low numbers of bertha armyworm reported in moth traps.

The much needed rain halted haying operations in many areas in the North Parkland and Valleys North. Pastures were depleting rapidly and second cut hay crop growth was very minimal due to limited moisture prior to the recent rains. Annual forage harvest has begun for silage production in some areas. Water supplies on pastures are adequate.


Central Region

Warm and humid weather conditions continued for much of the week, allowing for rapid crop growth in the Central Region. Unsettled conditions over the week resulted in scattered heavy thundershowers, tornado warnings, heavy winds and some reports of hail (Fannystelle and Culross). Rainfall amounts ranged significantly, and in places was very welcome; amounts ranged from zero, to as much as 65 mm. Alonsa area reported 125 to 150 mm. Most areas have adequate moisture for excellent growing conditions. However, there is variability across the region as some areas are looking for more rain, while others have standing water in low lying areas and ditches are running. In areas of highest accumulation, yellowing and stress conditions are becoming more evident.

Cereal crops throughout the region look good, although many are lodged. Some fields have recovered from lodging. Most fungicide applications are complete. Fall rye, winter wheat and barley are turning as they approach maturity.

There is a wide range in canola development as the last seeded fields are now flowering; fungicide applications for sclerotinia should be complete this week. Many of the most advanced fields are finishing flowering and pods are filling.

Sunflowers are growing well and are in R3 to R5 stage. Monitoring continues for insects, and staging is being done for fungicide application. Sunflower beetle numbers are low. Corn is growing rapidly as tasseling has started. Soybeans are flowering and nodulating well. Some fungicide applications are being made. Where iron chlorosis has persisted, some necrotic leaf tissue and stunting of plants is evident. Edible beans are flowering and fungicide applications continue. Conditions are conducive for white mould, although none is reported to date. Bacterial blight is reported in cranberry and kidney types. With recent heavy rains some fields are showing stress symptoms of yellowing. Overall, most fields look good.

Pea fields are flowering with the majority podded. Irrigation continues in potato and vegetable crops in the Portage area.

Diamondback moth and bertha armyworm trap counts are average to low. There are higher numbers in western parts of the region. Lygus bugs were found, but numbers are low. Grasshopper nymphs are present at field edges and on roadsides at average populations to date. Some hot spots from last season have seen control measures taken. True armyworms continue to be found in cereal fields, particularly in lodged areas. Most fields do not have sufficient numbers to warrant control, although some isolated treatment may occur. Most armyworm larvae are at an advanced stage, when treatment is no longer warranted. Some reports of high orange wheat blossom midge populations in the western part of the region, but wheat fields have advanced past the susceptible stage to this insect. Corn borer populations are reported to be approaching threshold levels in the Portage area.

Haying is underway and conditions look favourable for a near normal hay crop for many. Alfalfa second cut is starting. Alfalfa-grass first cut is wrapping up as weather conditions allow. Baling progress has been slow for some producers due to high humidity and rains. Alfalfa weevil damage is visible in some of the alfalfa/grass fields. Pastures are looking good with abundant rain and warmer temperatures.


Eastern Region

In the Eastern Region, warm temperatures and high humidity levels continued along with almost daily isolated rainfall events or thunderstorms of varying severity. Rainfall accumulations ranged from 10 to over 75 mm with large accumulations occurring as a part of sudden thunderstorms. Rainfall amounts were generally higher in central and southern districts, and fields in these areas show more evidence of standing water and areas where crop is drowned out. Some storms brought strong winds which caused crop lodging, particularly in cereals. Soil moisture conditions on crop land are rated as adequate to surplus with most of the surplus situations in central and especially southern districts.

Spring cereal crops are in the milk growth stage. Winter wheat is in soft to hard dough. Canola is podding. Soybeans range from late R1 to R3. Sunflowers range from R1 to R4 with corn ranging from V12 to VT.

Herbicide and fungicide applications are now complete. So far, insect concerns are limited. Some reports of insecticide applications to control armyworms in cereals crops are noted. Reports of root rots in soybeans (Rhizoctionia or Phytophthora) increased. Well below threshold levels of soybean aphids are noted in a few fields.

Across the region, the majority of hay and pasture lands are in good condition. For first cut hay, it is estimated that 40% is standing, 30% is cut and 30% is baled or put up as silage. Quality is rated as good. Availability of livestock water is adequate.


Interlake Region

Areas of the Interlake Region were once again impacted by thunderstorms in which rainfall exceeded amounts over 60 to 80 mm. Isolated regions saw rainfall amounts up to 100 mm in the Arborg and Hodgson area. Symptoms of excess moisture, including crop yellowing, can be seen in many fields in the Arborg and Riverton areas. However, in other areas of the region including Fisher Branch and Ashern, the rainfall was welcomed.

Winter wheat fields started to turn color as they approach maturity. Spring cereal staging ranges from the soft dough or milk stage to the flowering stage in later seeded crops. Canola staging vary from podded to 20 to 30% flowering. Fungicide applications are nearly complete.

Soybean fields continue to flower; corn has begun to tassel in the South Interlake. Forage grass seed fields continue to mature and will be swathed towards the end of the month; early maturing forage grass seed crops are starting to be harvested.

Rainfall in the northwest areas of the Interlake Region was for the most part welcomed as pasture and hay field growth was slowing due to dry conditions. However, the precipitation hampered haying operations. Grasshoppers in pastures are prevalent and are in second or third instar. Alfalfa weevils are causing significant damage to alfalfa hay crops that are not cut or sprayed.