Crop Conditions as of August 8, 2017

 
 
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Crop Conditions as of August 8, 2017

Recent scattered rain across the province has been too light and variable to significantly improve soil moisture and crop conditions, especially in the Southern and Central Regions (see the Map). Crop condition ratings declined for the Southern and Central Regions, improved for the North West and Peace Regions and remained unchanged in the North East Region from last week. Provincially, crop conditions are rated at 56 per cent in good to excellent condition, down from the 5-year average (2012-2016) of 72 per cent (see Table 1). In terms of crop development, spring seeded cereals across the province are mostly starting the dough development stage.

Harvest operations have begun in the Southern and Central Regions. Approximately four per cent of crops in the province have been combined and another three per cent of them are swathed. About 66 per cent of winter wheat and 29 per cent of fall rye are already in bin, with five per cent of winter wheat and 20 per cent of fall rye in the swath. Preliminary dryland yield index declined slightly, compared to two weeks ago and is estimated at 94.7 per cent. Provincially, the dryland yield (5-year averages are in brackets) are estimated at 45.8 (47.5) bushels per acre for spring wheat, 59.6 (66.5) bushels per acre for barley, 75.0 (77.8) bushels per acre for oats and 38.4 (39.0) bushels per acre for canola (see Table 2).

First cut dryland hay is 97 (89) per cent complete across the province. Preliminary average provincial yield on dryland is estimated at 1.6 (1.5) tons per acre, with the quality rated at 82 (67) per cent good to excellent. Irrigated haying operations are mostly complete at 99 (99) per cent, with yield at 2.8 (2.3) tons per acre and quality rated as 92 (71) per cent good to excellent. Second cut haying operations are underway, with nine per cent of dryland and 39 per cent of irrigated land complete. The estimated yield for second cut hay is reported 1.5 (1.0) tons per acre for dryland and 2.6 (1.8) tons per acre for irrigated lands with quality rated at 86 (74) per cent good to excellent in dryland and 93 (92) per cent in irrigated.



REGIONAL ASSESSMENTS:
The 2017 Alberta Crop Report Series continues to provide summaries for the following five regions:

Region One: Southern (Strathmore, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Foremost)

  • While hot and dry weather conditions continue, harvest has begun. Dryland yields are variable depending on the rainfall received and when they were seeded, but are generally lower than average. Spring seeded cereals are mostly finishing the dough development stage. The population of Diamondback moths, Lygus bugs and gophers are reported as over threshold. Gophers are reported at 13 per cent moderate and four per cent over threshold.
  • Nearly 14 per cent of crops are in the bin, with another nine per cent in the swath. While 74 per cent of winter wheat and 77 per cent of fall rye are combined, 19 per cent of spring wheat, 29 per cent of barley, 11 per cent of canola and 46 per cent of dry peas are either combined or swathed.
  • First cut haying operations for both dryland and irrigated land are virtually done, with 87 and 93 per cent rated as good to excellent quality, respectively. Preliminary average yield on dryland is estimated at 1.4 tons per acre and 3.2 tons per acre on irrigated land. Second cut haying operations are underway, with 20 per cent of dryland and 70 per cent of irrigated land complete.
  • Both pasture and tame hay conditions are reported as 81 per cent poor to fair and 19 per cent good to excellent.
Region Two: Central (Rimbey, Airdrie, Coronation, Oyen)
  • Scattered showers in different parts of the Region has not prevented dry conditions. Some farmers are thinking to silage or bale more crops, due to the lower than expected yields. Gophers and Diamondback moths are a concern. Diamondback moths population is reported at 13 per cent moderate and 18 per cent over threshold.
  • While spring seeded cereals are mostly in the dough development stage, harvest has just started with 15 per cent of winter wheat and 14 per cent of rye either combined or in the swath.
  • First cut haying operations are 97 per cent complete for dryland and 98 per cent for irrigated land. Average yield on dryland is estimated at 1.4 tons per acre, while irrigated is 2.2 tons per acre. Quality is rated at 79 per cent good to excellent for dryland hay and 90 per cent for irrigated.
  • Pasture (tame hay) growth conditions are now reported as 40 (42) per cent poor, 32 (30) per cent fair and 28 (28) per cent good, respectively.
Region Three: North East (Smoky Lake, Vermilion, Camrose, Provost)
  • Warm days have allowed for progress through growth stages. Most of the spring seeded cereals are now finishing the milk development stage. Some fields (mostly unharvested ones from last season and unseeded ones this season) are too soft for any equipment. Diamondback moths are a concern in canola fields, with 17 per cent moderate and five per cent over threshold populations. Gophers are reported three per cent over threshold.
  • First cut haying operations are 95 per cent complete on dryland. Average yield is estimated at 1.9 tons per acre for dryland hay with quality rated at 79 per cent good to excellent.
  • Pasture (tame hay) conditions declined from the previous week, but still are rated at one (three) per cent poor, 14 (16) per cent fair, 45 (41) per cent good and 40 (40) per cent excellent, respectively.
Region Four: North West (Barrhead, Edmonton, Leduc, Drayton Valley, Athabasca)
  • Wet weather conditions continued with more precipitation over the past week. Hail was reported in some areas and the forage harvest was restricted by wet conditions. Spring cereals are mostly in the milk development stage. Grasshoppers are a concern with 49 per cent moderate and 11 per cent over threshold population.
  • First cut hay is 93 per cent complete on dryland, while second cut haying has begun. Average yield for the first cut is estimated at 2.1 tons per acre, with quality rated at 75 per cent good to excellent.
  • Pasture (tame hay) conditions reported as 15 (14) per cent fair, 39 (36) per cent good and 46 (50) per cent excellent.
Region Five: Peace River (Fairview, Falher, Grande Prairie, Valleyview)
  • Some crops are starting to suffer from lack of moisture, due to warm and dry weather conditions. Spring seeded cereals are mostly at the milk development stage. Grasshoppers’ population is reported at eight per cent moderate and four per cent over threshold.
  • First cut haying operations are 97 per cent complete on dryland with the average yield estimated at 1.3 tons per acre. Quality is rated at 84 per cent good to excellent.
  • Both pasture and tame hay conditions are reported as 24 per cent poor to fair and 76 per cent good to excellent.

Ashan Shooshtarian, Crop Statistician
Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
Economics and Competitiveness Branch
Statistics and Data Development Section
E-mail:ashan.shooshtarian@gov.ab.ca
Phone:780-422-2887

August 11, 2017

Note to Users: The contents of this document may not be used or reproduced without properly accrediting Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, Economics and Competitiveness Branch, Statistics and Data Development Section
The 2017 Alberta crop reporting series is available on the Internet at: http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/sdd4191


 
 
 
 
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For more information about the content of this document, contact Ashan Shooshtarian.
This document is maintained by Samantha Wallbank.
This information published to the web on August 11, 2017.
Last Reviewed/Revised on August 18, 2017.