Crop Report: Issue 4, May 25, 2015


Weekly Provincial Summary

  • Excellent drying conditions due to warmer, drier weather allowed seeding operations to resume in many areas of Manitoba. Provincially, seeding progress is estimated at 87% complete.
  • The previous week’s weather of rain, snow, wind and cool temperatures impacted some crops across the Province. Excess moisture impacted crop emergence and plant stands, mainly in the lower areas of fields. Frost, wind and excess moisture resulted in reseeding of mainly canola acres.
  • Increased flea beetle activity in the earliest seeded canola fields is reported.  Control measures are necessary in some fields, along with reseeding; monitoring of feeding damage will continue.
  • Crops are emerging rapidly with the more favourable weather conditions.  Weed control will become a priority for producers as crops and weeds advance.

Southwest Region

In the Southwest Region, no rainfall was received over the past week which allowed for excellent drying conditions. However, soil remains saturated in the south-western areas of the region due to last week’s precipitation. Soil temperatures are on the rise which is allowing for good crop establishment. The freezing temperatures and windy conditions of the previous weekend caused frost damage to some emerged canola crops. Reseeding is taking place and some fields continue to be assessed for damage.
Overall, seeding is estimated at 90% complete in the Southwest Region.  Most of the cereal crops are seeded, except for some green feed acres and low areas of fields that will be sown after it has dried up. Seeding of canola and flax is 80% complete, corn and sunflowers are about 70% planted, and seeding of peas is complete. With warmer soil temperatures, seeding of soybeans is underway and with good soil moisture, rapid emergence should occur. Soybean seeding is 60% done.
Most early seeded cereal crops are emerged; stands are becoming more uniform after slow and uneven germination. Early seeded canola is also emerged and is in the cotyledon stage. Flea beetle activity is evident as the insecticide component in seed treatments only provides three to four weeks of protection from time of seeding. Some producers are spraying post-emergent insecticide for control.
Winter cereals also experienced rapid growth over the past week and are in the 3 to 5 leaf/tillering stage of development. Weed control measures are on-going with progress at 75 to 80% complete in some areas.
Warmer temperatures over the past week has progressed pastures to nearly the 3 leaf stage. More cattle are being moved to pasture, with some supplemental feeding required until pasture growth is sufficient. Alfalfa growth remains slow due to the cooler temperatures and frost of the previous week; however, it is recovering and starting to resume growth. Dugouts remain at 90% to over-capacity in the region.


Northwest Region

There was no recordable precipitation in any areas of the Northwest Region over the past week. Day time temperatures were warm with no reports of frost. Soil conditions are variable throughout the region with excessive moisture experienced in some localized pockets and dry conditions in other areas. Crop damage from freezing temperatures, wind and excessive moisture in the previous week resulted in reseeding of some early seeded canola crops. Some reseeding due to wind damage is also reported in the Swan River district.
Good seeding progress was made throughout the Northwest Region over the past week with progress estimated at 95% complete. Approximately 95% of the cereal acres are seeded and 75% of those acres have emerged. About 90% of the canola crop is seeded, with approximately 30% of the acres emerged. Both flax and field peas are at 95% planted with emergence at 50% of the acres. For soybeans, progress is at 85% complete, while corn planting is 80% complete. Many corn fields for silage are also planted. Crop emergence to date is uniform.
Weed growth is general throughout most parts of the region. Annual weeds that are beginning to appear in field crops include wild oats, hemp nettle and cleavers, as well as perennial weeds including Canada thistle, sow thistle and dandelions.
Flea beetle activity continues to cause concern in some parts of the region, particularly the Swan Valley where feeding damage is severe on canola plants recovering from frost injury. Post-emergent control measures for flea beetles are necessary in some cases.
Forages and pastures are progressing in growth due to the welcomed heat over the past week. Supplemental feed is still being offered to cattle on pastures. Water supply is rated as good to excellent on all pastures.

Central Region

In the Central Region, temperatures warmed up with frost last reported on Tuesday, May 19. The previous week’s weather did result in crop injury; frost injury and mechanical damage due to wind and sleet is reported in cereals, but particularly in canola. Some reseeding of canola occurred, although less than expected. Areas above the escarpment and in the northwest areas of the region sustained more damage.  In some cases, flea beetle injury, in addition to the environmental stresses, are the reasons for reseeding. Crop damage due to excess moisture in low lying areas of fields is also evident.
However, with the return to favourable weather producers were able to get back in to the fields in the later part of the week and over the weekend. Excellent seeding progress was made where field conditions allowed. Rapid emergence of crops should now occur with warmer soil and air temperatures.
Seeding is reported as 75 to 95% complete in the Central Region. The area of Central Plains (Portage-Gladstone) reports 70 to 85% complete, while the Pembina area reports 85 to 95% complete. Seeding of cereal crops is complete for most of the region, with the northwest areas close to completion at 90 to 95% done. Growth had slowed due to cooler temperatures, so the recent warm temperatures are very welcome. Cereals continue to emerge. The most advanced spring cereals are in the two to four leaf stages, and early five leaf stage. Herbicide applications will continue in the most advanced fields, particularly for wild oat control.
Some producers had been holding back on seeding canola due to risk of frost, or to spread out swath timing and harvest; almost all those acres are now seeded or will be shortly. Soybeans continue to go in. Those seeded three weeks and more ago are starting to emerge, as are those seeded last week. Rolling of early seeded soybean fields was delayed due to weather constraints. Those fields will now have to wait for rolling until the first trifoliate stage to avoid crop injury. Corn planting progress ranges from 75 to 100% complete; some fields have emerged. Canola seeding ranges from 25 to 100% complete. Pea acres are complete. Edible bean seeding has begun and will continue through the week.
Most winter wheat and fall rye fields are reported to be in excellent to good condition, with only a fraction of acres rated as fair. Minimal acres are reported as re-seeded. Herbicide applications resumed late in the week, as producers allowed crops to recuperate following the earlier frost events and low temperatures. The last of the applications should wrap up in the next day or two. The winter cereal crops are growing rapidly and stem elongation has begun.
Producers had hoped to do some pre-emergent treatments but weather conditions continue to interfere. First applications for grass control in canola have begun. Wild oats and quackgrass are the most abundant weeds at this point. Broadleaf emergence is starting. Winter annuals are starting to flower, and curled dock and Canada thistle are present.
Flea beetles are the main insect issue to date. Both striped and crucifer types are evident. Canola that was seeded two or three weeks ago are being monitored carefully, as the effectiveness of seed treatments is now declining. These fields are under stress and weakened due to cold temperatures which slowed emergence, as well as frost, high winds, sleet and excess moisture. The additional stress of insect pressure is a concern. Some insecticide treatments have been applied to headlands. A few entire fields will be sprayed. In some cases, reseeding will occur as a result of the combined stresses to the crop.
Rainfall and warmer temperatures improved forage growth. Some cattle have been moved to pasture. Pastures overgrazed last year are slow to recover, as are hay fields where a late cut was taken. Rain has replenished dugouts. Some producers in Langruth and Lakeland areas are struggling with water issues due to high winds which raised Lake Manitoba water levels and flooded land along the lake.

Eastern Region

Isolated rainfall events resulting in only a few millimetres of accumulation occurred across the Eastern Region. Soil moisture conditions on crop land, hay and pasture land are rated as adequate to surplus. With the sunny and increasingly warmer temperatures last week, fields continued to dry out and some seeding on lighter textured soils or areas that had experienced lower amounts of rainfall resumed. Producers hope to return to fields with heavier textured soils by mid-week. Most standing water in fields is now gone. Bare areas in fields due to prolonged excess moisture have become evident.
Seeding is estimated at 80% complete in the Eastern Region. All spring wheat, 95% of barley, 95% of oats, 80% of canola, all flax, 40% of soybeans, all sunflowers and 90% of corn are seeded.
For crops already planted, spring cereal crops is either emerging or in the 1 to 2 leaf growth stage, canola is emerging to cotyledon growth stage and soybeans, corn and sunflowers are just starting to emerge.
Herbicide applications are occurring in spring wheat. Flea beetle activity is noted in canola, although there are no reports of insecticide applications. Caution is being used when rolling soybean fields that could not be rolled right after seeding to avoid damage to emerging seedlings. If significant progress on soybean seeding does not occur this week, acres may be switched into oats, barley or canola. Winter wheat is tillering and herbicides are being applied before crop staging becomes too advanced.
Across the region, the majority of hay and pasture lands are in good condition. Pastures are picking up with producers starting to move cows to pasture as calving is slowing down. Dugouts are full and availability of livestock water is adequate.

Interlake Region

In the Interlake Region, last week’s forecast started with cool temperatures and frost during the nights then ended with warm temperatures above 20oC and night temperatures above 10oC. Water can still be seen sitting on fields throughout the region from the snow and rain from the previous week’s storm, making some fields too wet to access or seed. Soil temperatures have increased and are averaging 12 to 16oC. However, with the warm weather, some fields are drying up and producers were able to get back onto some of their fields.
Seeding progress throughout the Interlake Region is estimated to be 65 to 70% complete. South Interlake producers are nearly done seeding their soybean acres, while in the North Interlake producers are still seeding cereals, oilseeds and soybean crops. Fields near Riverton, Arnes and Gimli are still quite wet and are restricting producers from seeding.
Spring wheat staging varies anywhere from emerging/seedling to the 2 to 3 leaf stage. Canola fields are mostly at the cotyledon stage. Some early seeded soybeans have started to emerge. There are no reports of severe frost damage in any crop type.
In-crop spraying on forage seed acres will start this week for broadleaf and grassy weed control. Seed alfalfa fields are starting to show some growth after the previous couple weeks of cool temperatures and frosts.
Sunshine and warmer temperatures have benefitted hay fields and pastures; some alfalfa stands 25 cm tall. There is ample water supply for cattle to consume on pasture.


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