Final Crop Report 2017: Issue 25, October 16


Weekly Provincial Summary

·                 Seeding progress was slower than normal in April, but in May progress was very quick with 95% of the main field crops seeded by the fourth week of May. The 5 year average to achieve 95% seeded is the first week of June.

·                 Dry conditions persisted throughout most of the province until mid-September. Crop yields for spring cereals and canola are better than average in many areas; however, lower yields were reported for soybeans due to dry conditions during pod filling. Dry weather conditions and low disease pressure resulted in good crop quality.

·                 Harvest in Manitoba is nearing completion. Harvest of cereal crops, field peas, and canola is essentially complete. Soybean and flax harvest is close to complete, grain corn and sunflower harvest is ongoing.

·                 Germination and stand establishment of winter cereal crops is good; seeded acres are down across the province.

·                 Fall field work including tillage, soil testing, post-harvest weed control, and fertilizer applications of anhydrous ammonia is on-going.

Southwest Region
Dry conditions throughout much of the region resulted in good harvest progress. Harvest is complete in the southern parts of the region, and 85 to 90% complete in the northern parts of the region. Harvest progress has been slowed by rainfall in some areas.
Winter cereal yields were average to below average. Winter wheat yields range from 60 to 70 bu/acre with good quality due to low levels of FHB. Fall rye yield averaged 65 to 70 bu/acre.
Spring wheat harvest is complete in most of the region. Average yields are 60 to 70bu/acre. The majority of the crop has graded #1 or #2, CWRS protein levels averaged 11.5 to 13%. Barley yields ranged from 80 to 90 bu/acre with good quality. Oat yields averaged 95 to 110 bu/acre with good quality.
Canola struggled early in the season due to dry conditions in some areas, but overall yields were excellent. Average yields were 40 to 45 bu/acre, with good to excellent quality and grading #1. Minimal downgrading due to green counts occurred this year. Most of the canola was harvested at lower than normal moisture levels. Many fields had blackleg, but sclerotinia was minimal and disease had very little impact on canola yields. Some canola was sprayed for Diamond back moths and bertha army worms.
Flax harvest is 70 to 80% complete with 25 to 30bu/acre yields. Quality is good to excellent. Field peas yielded 45 to 50 bu/acre with good quality
Soybean harvest is 75 to 80% complete with average yields of 30 to 35bu/acre. There were no major disease issues for soybeans, but some producers sprayed for soybean aphid. Yields were limited by moisture this growing season.
Grain corn harvest has just started, no yield reports to date. Sunflower harvest has not started yet.
Winter wheat established well and is responding favourably to recent good weather conditions.
Overall 2017 was a good crop year for the Southwest region. An early spring and dry soil conditions resulted in early spring seeding. In some areas of the region the seed bed was very dry, and there were some reports of seed burn due to fertilizer application. Dry conditions persisted throughout the summer, and growing season rainfall ranged from 60 to 110% of normal. Dry conditions in July are thought to be responsible for yield reductions in winter wheat, canola, and soybeans.
Early in the season it looked like livestock feed supplies would be short due to hot and dry weather, but most areas have adequate feed with good quality. First cut hay was not that impressive; however, the rain events during the growing season gave a good boost to hay and pasture land. Some areas report that feed quality is poor and supplementation to bump up quality will be required. Green feed and silage crops have had average to above average yields and quality.
Post-harvest weed control was limited early in the fall due to dry weather conditions, but recent rainfall has resulted in weed growth. Tillage, anhydrous ammonia, and manure applications are on going.
Northwest Region
Nice fall weather continued throughout the Northwest Region and this resulted in good harvest progress over the last week. The spring wheat harvest is basically complete, and most canola is harvested although some of the later seeded canola remains. A few acres of flax and most of the soybeans are still standing in the Roblin area. The hemp harvest is underway. Most of the fall field work is complete and many fields are ready for spring. Some anhydrous ammonia has been applied as harvest and field conditions allow. Weeds and volunteers are actively growing as minimal fall weed control has taken place at this point.
The red spring wheat harvest is generally complete in the region. The average yield for hard red spring wheat is 75 to 85 bu/acre with 90 to 95% of the crop grading #1, and the remainder grading #2. There are some reports of low protein levels on wheat around the Dauphin area.
Canola harvest is nearing completion, approximately 95% of the acres have been combined. Those acres remaining are on fields that were seeded later in the spring. Canola yields averaged 50 to 60 bu/acre. The quality of canola harvested is standard for the region with 98% #1 and the balance #2.
Field pea harvest operations are complete, and soybean and flax harvest is ongoing. Field peas averaged 65 to 75 bu/acre and graded #1 around Swan River and #2 in the Roblin area. Soybeans are averaging 30 to 50 bu/acre, with 95% of the crop grading #2. There are still some beans out in the field and grain corn remains standing.
The 2017 growing season was a variable one in the Northwest Region with regards to precipitation. Spring conditions were wet with crops stressed from excess moisture and then conditions changed to dry for the remainder of the season. Frost along with wet conditions in the spring resulted in two distinct plantings of canola with better yields on the earlier seeded canola. These wet spring conditions delayed emergence on some crops as well. As the season progressed, the region received very little precipitation and crops were under drought stress for the remainder of the growing season.
These dry conditions along with high temperatures caused some pod abortion during flowering on canola however yields and quality did not seem to be affected a significant amount. The dry weather conditions helped to reduce disease pressure. There was some flea beetle damage early in the season along with low levels of sclerotinia and alternaria in canola. Wheat midge populations were high in the Roblin area but did not appear to cause yield losses or reduce crop quality. Producers were able to limit the impact of disease and insect pressure due to appropriate application of fungicides and insecticides to susceptible crops at the most beneficial stage.
For the most part, this year has resulted in average yields for tame hay and greenfeed with good quality. Corn silage yields have been average to above average with exceptional quality due to many harvesters available in a timely manner. Wild hay production was higher than any year reported since 2011. Quality of wild hay will be variable due to harvest timing, species present and % residue in the bale. Forage yields around Roblin and corn silage yields around Swan River were lower as a result of drier conditions.
Feed supplies are adequate. Hay feed test results are showing variable quality. Pasture conditions are variable and sites with less management are suffering from overgrazing.
Availability of livestock water in the region is rated at 95 to 100% adequate. Additional moisture will be required to replenish some dugouts which are rated at 50 to 60% full. There have been reports of isolated cases of dugouts drying up. Poor water quality is also concern with lower water levels.
Central Region
Little if any rain fell this past week. Killing frosts have now occurred in most of the region, which will help with dry down of standing corn and sunflowers. Harvest of all other crops is essentially complete. Field work and fertilizer applications continue.
Much of the region reported wet spring conditions as a carryover from last fall. Spring melt was early and although flooding did occur, water levels declined relatively early. Although some wheat was seeded in the second week of April, spring seeding progress was slower than anticipated early in the season due to cooler temperatures and showers. Many producers waited for better planting conditions. Some fields were seeded borderline dry, and in some cases poor seedbed conditions resulted. Precipitation necessary for germination was delayed, in some areas well in to June. Spring growth of crops, pastures, and hayfields was slow due to cooler temperatures and dry conditions.
Much of the winter cereals suffered winter kill in eastern parts of the region, but fared better in western areas.
Frosts in May set back crops, and some re-seeding occurred. Dry conditions prevailed until late May, resulting in some producers seeding deeper than optimal, chasing moisture. Uneven germination due to lack of precipitation was very common, resulting in challenges for staging herbicides and fungicides. Blowing soils caused some crop injury, and some re-seeding did result. Hail events occurred, resulting in crop damage and impacting yields. High winds also resulted in injury to crops later in the season.
Herbicide applications were challenging this year. Cool dry conditions initially limited weed growth; and in many cases significant weed growth didn’t occur until after the optimal timing for herbicide application.
Weather conditions started to improve in late June, and more seasonal temperatures improved growing conditions. Precipitation continued to be low in many areas, and an extended stretch from late June to mid-September with minimal rainfall limited grain fill in soybeans in particular. Most of the region has seen lower than normal rainfall over the growing season, with some areas reporting as low as 55% of normal. Subsoil moisture carried much of the annual crops and forages, and needs to be replenished. Many crops yielded much better than expected.
Winter wheat yields averaged 78 to 85 bu/acre, and fall/hybrid rye averaged 100 bu/acre. Test weight was good, as were falling numbers for rye. Quality was very good, with low FDK injury/vomitoxin levels. Minimal ergot reported. Lower yields were a result of winterkill injury.
Spring wheat yields were excellent, ranging from 55 to 100+bu/acre, with most reporting 65 to 75 bu/acre average for their areas. Eastern areas averaged 75 to 80 bu/acre. As high as 95% of CWRS graded #1, with protein at 13 to 13.3%. CNHR grades were more variable, with some stations reporting the majority grading #1, others had majority #2. Protein was reported as 12 to 12.2%. Eastern areas reported 85 to 90 bu/acre average yield for CNHR. CPS wheats were also very good quality, with proteins somewhat higher than CNHRs, and yields somewhat lower. Fusarium was minimal in all cases, with FDK/vomitoxin levels < 0.5 ppm. Barley yields ranged from 65 to 120 bu/acre, with the majority averaging 80 to 85 bu/acre. Quality is excellent. Malt barley averaged in the 100 bu/acre range, with excellent quality. Oats ranged from 100 to 180 bu/acre, averaging 125 to 160 bu. Quality was excellent, and some report bushel weight as the heaviest seen. All graded at the highest designation.
Canola yields were excellent, a pleasant surprise after the early season struggles. Seed sat in cold ground for an extended period, making it more susceptible to flea beetles. Cutworms were an issue in some fields. Some fields were reseeded due to the early season stresses, with May frosts and dry soil conditions/poor seedbed/uneven germination having the biggest impact. Blackleg was noted in many fields. Sclerotinia was present in most fields, but at low levels. Most yields ranged from 40 to 65 bu, averaging 50 to 55bu/acre. Quality is excellent with the crop grading #1.
Flax quality is very good; yields are average to excellent, with some 40+ bu/acre yields reported.
Pea acres were significantly lower, due to last year’s poor yields as a result of excess moisture. This year, peas yielded in the 60 bu+ range with some fields exceeding 80 and 90 bu. Harvested quality excellent.
Iron deficiency chlorosis was more prevalent this year and lasted for an extended period of time due to the cooler weather. Iron chlorosis was evident in the majority of soybean fields; but was minimal in edibles. Both plant and pod height was variable throughout the region for this crops.
Edible bean harvest is complete. Yields are higher than last year, averaging 1800 to 2000 lbs/acre, with highs of 2500 to 3000 lbs/acre reported. Quality is very good. Seed size is good, with the odd exception. Cracked seed coats were generally low. White mould and bacterial blight were reported, but there were no significant disease issues.
Soybean harvest is close to complete. Yields range from 17 to 50 bu/ac, averaging 32 to 35 bu/ac. Quality is good, with essentially all crops receiving the top grade of #2. Soybean aphid was more pronounced than previous years, with some fields reaching threshold levels, and growers making the decision to apply insecticide. Dry conditions led to overall lower yields this year. Higher yields were obtained in areas receiving timely August rains. Smaller seed size due to extremely dry conditions. Minimal white mould reported. Phytophthera root rot and other root rots were evident in most fields; lack of moisture impacted yield more than disease.
Sunflower harvest continues. Early yield reports to date range from 1800 to 2600 lbs/acre on round types and oils; average to date is pegged at 1875 lbs. Quality is good, sizing is on the small side, due to dry conditions. Areas that received more rain are better sized. A bit of mid stalk rot was reported, with some wind breakage. Desiccation prior to harvest continues to increase, improving quality and yield with earlier harvest.
Grain corn harvest is 20 to 25% complete. Early yields range from 110 to 180 bu/acre, with average yields to date in the 135 to 150 bushel range. Moisture levels range from the low 20s to low 30s, but are declining. Corn silage harvest continues. Early yield reports of 10 to 12 tons on lighter land; later fields to be harvested are expected to be better, but yields will be lower than last year due to the dry growing season.
Impact of disease in most crops is lower than expected. Root rots were evident in many crops. Sclerotinia was evident in all susceptible crops, generally at lower levels. Blackleg lesions were evident in many canola fields, and are increasing every year. Aster yellows were minimal in canola. Leaf spotting diseases including brown spot and bacterial blight were evident in soybeans, and bacterial blight in edible beans. Fusarium head blight was minimal in cereal crops.
Insect concerns were higher than normal this season. Flea beetles caused some issues in canola, an added stress to already stressed crops. Numbers were higher than in previous years. Isolated insecticide applications were made to headlands for grasshoppers. Isolated issues were seen with true armyworm and cutworm. Some high numbers of European corn borer were reported. Some wireworm problems were reported early in the season. Minimal diamondback moth larval feeding, and some lygus damage was seen. Insecticide applications were necessary in a number of fields where thresholds were reached in a variety of crop situations. High numbers of beneficial insects were seen in many fields.
Post-harvest weed control was limited due to dry growing conditions. Good germination for volunteer grain growth has occurred following rains. Fall cultivation continues, after a slow start due to the dry conditions. Good progress has been made in much of the region, following rains, although some areas report the ground is still on the hard/dry side. Damage has been caused to tillage equipment.
Soil testing continues. Results are variable, but there are many reports of very low soil test N and P. Fall fertilizing has begun, and is starting to ramp up as soil temperatures decline.
Herbicides are being applied and incorporated.
Manure application is on-going and progressing well.
Winter wheat seeded acres are down overall. Acres seeded were limited due to dry conditions at seeding time. Germination and stand establishment is good to excellent this year. The crop ranges up to the four leaf stage.
Hay fields are in fair to good condition. There is a reasonable supply of almost all classes of feed, including straw, for most of the region. Quality of feed is very good, due to drier conditions at harvest
Livestock feeding is higher than normal for this time of year due to the dry conditions. Pastures that were overstocked or on lighter soils stopped growing in late summer providing very little regrowth for grazing. Cattle are being removed from perennial pasture and being supplemented, or moved to extended grazing such as second cut hay fields or harvested grain corn
Subsoil moisture is low and will need to be recharged. Livestock water supply is also low - groundwater has declined, dugouts are lower than normal and many sloughs are drying up.
Eastern Region
Limited rainfall over the past week has allowed for good harvest progress, as well as tillage and fall fertilization. Harvest of cereals, canola, and soybeans are at or near completion. Sunflower and corn harvest is on going. Fieldwork has progressed rapidly, and many producers are close to being caught up.
Average soil moisture conditions on cropland were rated as 90% adequate and 10% short across the Eastern Region. Soil moisture conditions on hay and pasture land were rated at 60% adequate and 20% short and 20% very short with the driest soil conditions occurring in southern districts.
Spring wheat had an average yield of 65 bu/acre with the crop grading an average of 50% #1 and 50% #2. HRS wheat protein levels were on average lower this year due to higher than average yields. Oat yields averaged 150 bu/ac and graded #2. Disease pressure was lower this season in cereals due to the drier weather during the growing season. The acres seeded to winter wheat this fall have dropped approximately 25% compared to the fall of 2016.
Canola had an average yield of 50 bu/acre with 100% of the crop grading #1.
Soybeans had an average yield of 35 bu/acre with 100% of the crop grading #1. Soybean seed size is noticeably small. Iron deficiency chlorosis (IDC) was widespread in soybeans, increasing plant stress levels and making plants more susceptible to diseases like root rots. Average yields and seed size were decreased due to factors discussed above coupled with a lack of enough timely rainfall in August to promote seed fill.
Corn harvest is ongoing and at this point has an average yield of 125 bu/acre, grading is yet to be determined. Sunflower harvest is 25% complete, so far average yield is 2500 lbs/acre and grade is #2.
Overall grain quality appears to be quite good this year, dry conditions during the growing season resulted in less disease pressure. Insect pest levels were also low, and need for control was limited. Insects that primarily reduced yield, like soybean aphid, seemed to be the most active and concerning.
For 2017, alfalfa hay had average yields of 2.5 tonnes/acre for first cut, and 1.0 tonne/acre for second cut. Brome/alfalfa hay had an average first cut yield of 2.5 tonnes/acre. Other tame hay had an average first cut yield of 1.5 tonnes/acre. Wild hay had an average first cut yield of 1 tonne/acre. Greenfeed had an average yield of 3.5 tonnes per acre.
Some producers started feeding livestock one to two weeks earlier than last year due to the dry summer, which dried up pastures. Producers that received hog manure on their pastures got some grass growing after the September rains which cattle are grazing now. Overall most producers have a surplus of feed. Quality of hay seems to be better than last year. Pastures managed to hold up for most of the summer, the late summer rains helped get grass to regrow and fill dugouts.
Livestock winter feed supplies were rated as 20% surplus and 80% adequate for hay. Straw is rated at 90% adequate and 10% inadequate. Greenfeed and feed grains are rated at 100% adequate. Hay and pasture moisture conditions were rated as 60% adequate, 20% short and 20% very short. The availability of livestock water was rated as adequate.
Interlake Region
Minimal rainfall this past week allowed for excellent harvest progress in the Interlake region, with harvest more than 95% complete.  Only a few fields of canola and soybeans remain to be harvested, along with corn and sunflowers.   Fieldwork is well underway, with both tillage and drainage operations on-going. 

The crop year got off to a slow start. Last year’s excess moisture, along with spring rains caused significant delays with seeding operations in north Interlake.  Cool conditions prevailed through the spring.  Overnight temperatures continued to dip into the frost range, and soils were cold.   Many fields had stagey emergence, a result of tillage operations to dry out the seedbed, with limited precipitation following to aid germination. Minimal pre-seed burnoff occurred, as producers focussed on getting the crop in; weed control at the appropriate staging was limited.  Blowing soils caused some crop injury, and erosion was evident. Strong winds hampered timely in-crop herbicide application operations.  

Iron deficiency chlorosis was more prevalent this year and lasted for an extended period of time due to the cooler weather.  IDC was evident in the majority of soybean fields.

The majority of winter wheat fields were terminated in spring, due to winter kill. Surviving crop averaged 65 bu/acre, and graded #1.   Fall rye had good yields and quality; ergot ranged from 0.05 to 2% before cleaning.

Field peas averaged 65 bu/acre, with excellent quality.

Forage grass seed yields are reported as average to above average. 
Spring wheat ranged from 50-90 bu/acre, averaging 55-70 bu/acre.  Excellent quality with CWRS 70% #1, 30% #2, with virtually no vomitoxin reported. Protein ranged from 12-13.5%. CNHR varieties were higher yielding, with excellent quality.  Proteins were lower, ranging from 11.7-12.2%. Feed barley ranged from 80-95 bu/acre. Averaging 90 bu.  100% #1, 1 ppm vomitoxin.  Oats ranged from 90 to 180 bu/acre, averaged 100 to 120 bu/acre with 80% #2 and 20% #3, and very good bushel weight.

Canola yields ranged from 30 to 65 bu/acre, averaging 40 to 50 bu/acre with 100% graded #1. Flax yields are reported as excellent, ranging from 30 to 45 bu/acre and higher.

Soybean harvest is nearing completion with only a few fields remaining to harvest. To date, yields range from 17 to 45 bu/acre, averaging 32 to 35 bu/acre, all grading #2.  Later seeded soybeans benefited from scattered August rains; with resulting higher yields in some cases. 

Much of the alfalfa seed crop has been harvested, with yields ranging from 200 to 600 lbs/acre, prior to cleaning. 

Sunflowers harvest has begun; with no reported yields to date. Grain corn harvest is just starting; some producers are waiting for moisture levels to drop before starting.  Corn silage harvest is progressing in the north Interlake with yields from 12 to 17 tons/acre, averaging 13 to 14 tons/acre. 

Impact of disease on crops was lower than normal; a consequence of drier conditions.  In areas with higher rainfall sclerotinia was seen in canola and soybeans.  Fusarium presence was noted; again, in areas of higher rainfall. 

Insect issues included alfalfa weevil at high levels, requiring action to be taken.  Some higher levels of lygus in canola and soybean aphid; in some cases at threshold levels.  Significant numbers of beneficial predator insects were evident in fields.
Winter wheat acres have decreased with more producers growing soybeans and higher yielding spring wheat varieties, as well as due to winterkill losses.

Fall field work continues, as conditions have improved following rains.   Soil testing is on-going; P and K levels are reported as low. P and K fertilization of forages continues, as well as on fields intended for next year’s soybeans.  Fall N fertilizer is just starting. 

Pastures are rated fair to good. The open fall is allowing for relatively late fall grazing of stockpiled grass and/or hayfields.   Supplemental feeding is being done.  There is adequate quantity of feed supplies throughout the region.  Average hay yields: alfalfa 1.9 tons; brome/alfalfa and tame hay 1.3 tons; wild hay 0.9 tons; green feed 2 tons.  Dugouts are 10-50% full and water quality varies from poor to good.

Soil moisture conditions across the region on cropland, hay and pasture are rated as 100% adequate.  Subsoil moisture needs to be replenished. 

Seeded Acreage
Source: MASC Seeded Acreage Report, Annual
Based on analysis, seeding progress was slower than normal in April, but once in May, progress was very quick with 95% of the main field crops seeded by the fourth week of May. The 5 year average to achieve 95% seeded is the first week of June. 
Also, below are the Seeded Acreage results from MASC for 2017 as compared to the average for the previous 5 years.
Seeded acreage – Source: MASC Seeded Acreage Report, annual
5 year avg (2012-2016)
Hard Red Wheat
Can Pr. Spring Wheat
Feed Wheat
Durum Wheat
Winter Wheat
Fall Rye
Corn - Grain
Corn - Silage
Field Pea
Navy Bean
Pinto Bean
Black Bean
Kidney Bean
Cranberry Bean
Other Bean
Timothy seed
Alfalfa seed
Ann Ryegrass seed
Per Ryegrass seed
Tall Fescue seed