Crop Report: Issue 3, May 20, 2014


Weekly Provincial Summary

  • Seeding operations continued across most of Manitoba prior to the precipitation that fell Sunday and Monday.
  • Seeding progress by region varies from 5 to 40% complete.  However, some areas within the regions are not as advanced due to wet conditions.  The recent precipitation will slow seeding operations but in areas where lower rainfall amounts were received, seeding operations will resume with minimal delay.
  • The earliest seeded spring wheat is emerging.
  • Re-seeding of some winter wheat fields is occurring as winterkill has resulted in poor plant stands. Inadequate stubble height and density resulting in poor snow cover has been the dominant reason for winterkill.

Southwest Region

In the Southwest Region, rainfall amounts ranged from 25 to 35 mm.  Seeding had become general for most producers; however rain Sunday evening and Monday halted seeding and field work. Field and seeding conditions were still considered marginal as low areas, field borders and poorly drained areas were still wet. Seeding is estimated to be 5 to 10% complete; crops seeded to date include spring wheat, peas and canola. Most seeding is being done without pre-seed burn off as weeds are slow to emerge due to the cold weather conditions. Insect activity is slow to non-existent.
Winter wheat and fall rye continue to improve with nitrogen fertilizer being applied. Fall rye is in the 2 to 4 leaf stage with generally excellent winter survival. The winter wheat crop is more variable with 75 to 80% of the crop in fair to good condition and ranging in development from emergence to the 3 leaf stage. 
Forage crops are starting to green up with the recent rains and warmer temperatures but are still behind normal. The grasses are at 1 to 2 leaf stage. Alfalfa is showing signs of being impacted by early spring frosts which is further delaying its progress. Dugouts and sloughs are full to overflowing. Some producers are starting to move cattle to pasture due to wet corrals or dwindling feed supplies.

Northwest Region

More favorable drying conditions prevailed throughout the Northwest Region over the past week resulting in some producers being able to get on the land.  In general, less than 10% of the crop acres are seeded.  Most of the acres seeded are to wheat, with some acres to canola.  The best progress was made in the Roblin area where approximately 45% of the wheat acres are seeded.  Field operations were halted throughout the region with rain arriving Monday.  The Pas and Dauphin areas report the highest surplus soil moisture conditions.  Perennial and annual weeds, as well as volunteer plants, are growing.  In the Swan Valley area, some flea beetle activity is noticed along ditches adjacent to fields.
Although pastures and hayfields are greening up, there is still limited growth due to lack of heat to date. Rainfall in the last 24 hours has accumulated to excessive amounts in pastures and fields making them inaccessible and waterlogged. Supplemental feeding is still taking place in many locations due to slow growth of perennial pastures. Hay supplies are at a minimum.  

Central Region

Early in the week, precipitation amounts in the Central Region ranged from trace amounts up to 10 to 15 mm.  All areas of the region received rainfall on Sunday and Monday with amounts ranging from 15 to 25 mm.  Soil moisture is adequate to surplus for most areas, although areas of lighter land and lower rainfall in the Starbuck, Fannystelle, Elm Creek and Carman areas would welcome moisture.  Seeding has stopped due to the weekend rain, but forecast sun and warmer temperatures will see producers return to the fields.
The sun, wind and warm temperatures late in the week allowed for seeding in most areas.  Most progress was made with cereals, canola and corn, followed by soybeans.  The eastern side of the region, including Morden, Carman, Elm Creek, and Oakville, is most advanced where 50 to 60% of the crop seeded; in the eastern areas 90% of the cereals are seeded and 80% of the corn planted.  In areas to the west and north, seeding progress ranges from 5 to 10% complete due to continuing cooler than normal conditions and wet soils. Across the entire region all crop types are being seeded, although some producers are waiting for warmer soil temperatures before seeding soybeans and edible beans.  The earliest seeded wheat fields are emerging. 
Very little pre-seed burnoff was done due to limited weed growth.  Wild oats and volunteer cereals are now emerging and up to the one leaf stage.  Winter annuals and wild buckwheat are emerging, and quackgrass and dandelions are growing.  Hard frosts have killed some volunteer canola growth.  Little insect activity is reported, other than the presence of wireworms in isolated fields.
Winter wheat fields continue to be evaluated; however, winterkill has resulted in fields being terminated and reseeded.  Majority of terminated acres will be reseeded to spring wheat, with some acres reseeded to canola and soybeans.   Early estimates indicate acres impacted by winterkill ranges from 15 to 20% in some areas of the region, to as much as 70 to 75%.  Fields with good snow cover due to adequate stubble and density are faring better, although severe cold after snow melt may have compromised some stands. Fertilizing continues where conditions allow. 
Predominantly cool to seasonal temperatures, with some frosts, has led to slow development of hay crops and pastures.  Condition of hay land is 90 to 100% good; some winterkill is expected on those alfalfas with a lesser cold tolerance rating.  Pasture condition varies, predominantly poor to very poor due to lack of growth.  Native pastures are showing little development.  Supplemental feed is required for any cattle being taken to pasture.  Availability of livestock water is adequate as dugouts are full.

Eastern Region

Varying amounts of rainfall occurred throughout most of the Eastern Region. Rainfall events occurred early in the week and then again over the past weekend. Cumulative rainfall varied from 15 to 45 mm.  Soil temperatures in the past week have fluctuated from 3 to 120C.
Many producers were able to start seeding mid-week.  Corn, spring cereals, canola and soybeans are being planted across the region.  Producers seeded crop into field they could access.  Seeding progress by individual producers ranges between 10 and 50% complete. Spring fertilizer/manure application on spring wheat fields began last week.  
Winter wheat development started to accelerate last week since both soil and air temperatures increased; however, growth is still slower than normal and the crop is delayed in its development compared to previous years.  Overall, fields look good but there are some exceptions. Crops planted into less than ideal stubble last fall are demonstrating the slowest rate of development.  In most of these cases, adequate stands are now starting to show up. The most impacted fields will either be kept or only areas of the field will be terminated. Most nitrogen fertilizer has been broadcast.
Hay land and pasture growth is minimal due to the cool weather, with conditions rated as good to poor; cattle will need to be supplemental fed when moved to pasture.  Hay supplies are fair and there is feed available for purchase in the area. Availability of livestock water is rated as 100% adequate.

Interlake Region

Scattered showers throughout the Interlake Region last week resulted in amounts ranging from 2 to 10 mm.  Warm day/night time temperatures are improving soil moisture and soil temperature conditions.  Soil temperatures are still averaging 6 to 100C. 
Seeding in the Interlake Region is approximately 20% complete. Majority of the seeded acres include cereals, oilseeds, corn, and trace acres of soybeans. Progress is variable throughout the region, with south Interlake having more seeded acres in the Warren, Stonewall, and Selkirk areas, followed by the regions surrounding Teulon, Arborg, Fisher Branch and Riverton.  In Ashern producers have started to slowly do field work but due to soil moisture conditions, producers are still waiting for fields to dry up.  Cool soil temperatures are delaying soybean producers from planting while they wait for soil temperatures to reach 100C.  Broadcasting on winter wheat and forage stands is nearly completed. 
Cold temperatures and frost on several nights has slowed pasture and hay growth.  Producers are putting cattle out on pasture before adequate pasture growth due to lack of hay supplies. Dugout conditions are good.