Crop Conditions as of July 17, 2018 (Abbreviated Report)

 
 
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Crop Conditions as July 17, 2018 (Abbreviated Report)

Variable weather conditions across the province continued over the past week. Most areas in the Peace, North East and North West Regions and in some parts of the Central Region received at least 30 mm of rain, which was adequate for sustainable crop growth. However, receiving less than 20 mm rain were the Southern Region, some areas in the Central Region and some parts of the Peace Region, causing stress for crops and forages. These areas are badly in need of moisture. Also, some light to moderate hail damage has been reported in different regions.

Provincially, the rating of crop growing conditions fell only one per cent from last week to 72 per cent good to excellent, compared with the 5-year average (2013-2017) of 69 per cent (see Table 1). Regionally, compared to a week ago, crop condition ratings have declined 11 per cent in the Southern Region at 57 per cent good to excellent, down from the 5-year average of 65 per cent. In the Central Region, it improved three per cent to 64 per cent good to excellent, which is now in line with the 5-year average. For the North East Region, conditions were unchanged from a week ago at 84 per cent good to excellent, above the 5-year average of 78 per cent. For the North West Region, it fell slightly and is now rated at 68 per cent good to excellent, compared to the 5-year average of 70 per cent. For the Peace Region, crop conditions rated as 88 per cent good to excellent, much higher than the 5-year average of 61 per cent.

Surface and sub-surface soil moisture ratings across the province declined about three and two per cent, respectively, and remained variable across the province (see the Map). Surface soil moisture conditions (sub-surface soil moisture in brackets) are now rated as 11 (10) per cent poor, 30 (29) per cent fair, 44 (42) per cent good, 14 (18) per cent excellent and one (one) per cent excessive (see Table 2).

Pasture and tame hay growing conditions have deteriorated from last week. Provincially, pasture conditions are rated as 15 per cent poor, 31 per cent fair, 47 per cent good and seven per cent excellent. Tame hay conditions have similar ratings with 15 per cent poor, 34 per cent fair, 46 per cent good and five per cent excellent.


REGIONAL ASSESSMENTS:
The 2018 Alberta Crop Report Series continues to provide summaries for the following five regions:

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

  • Hot and windy conditions with no rain or the odd spotty shower was almost a repeat of last week. Crops are deteriorating and a vast majority of them are showing signs of heat stress given the dry conditions. Moisture is badly needed in the region.
  • Regionally, (5-year averages in brackets), 57 (64 and 65) per cent of spring wheat and barley, 63 (71) per cent of oats, 55 (64) per cent of canola and 62 (67) per cent of dry peas are in good to excellent condition. It is also worth noting that, these ratings are much better than last year, at this time. Most cereals in the region are still in the flowering stage.
  • Surface and sub-surface soil moisture conditions have declined by 10 and 11 per cent, respectively from a week ago and are now rated as 39 and 34 per cent good to excellent.
  • Continued hot and dry weather in the Region have also greatly affected pasture and hay condition. Pasture conditions (tame hay conditions in brackets) have deteriorated 11 (15) per cent from last week and are now rated as 59 (66) per cent poor to fair, 36 (30) per cent good and 5 (4) per cent excellent.
Region Two: Central (Rimbey, Airdrie, Coronation, Oyen)
  • Over the past week, some areas in the region received some rain (from a few tenth to over an inch), which was helpful to improve crop conditions. For those areas which did not, crops continue to show signs of stress. Overall, the whole region is badly in need of moisture and rain would be most welcome. Regionally, (5-year averages in brackets), 65 (65 and 66) per cent of spring wheat and barley, 67 (67) per cent of oats, 62 (62) per cent of canola and 69 (69) per cent of dry peas are in good to excellent condition. Most cereals in the region are in the beginning of flowering stage.
  • Even though surface soil moisture has declined by six per cent, sub-surface soil moisture improved four per cent from last week and are now rated as 48 and 54 per cent good to excellent.
  • Pastures are in need of a great deal of moisture for re-growth and conditions (tame hay conditions in brackets) are rated as 48 (48) per cent poor to fair, 50 (49) per cent good and 2 (3) per cent excellent.
Region Three: North East (Smoky Lake, Vermilion, Camrose, Provost)
  • Recent rain has benefited crops immensely. Only a few counties in the Region have reported some crops showing signs of stress. Regionally, (5-year averages in brackets), about 84 (80) per cent of wheat, 83 (76) per cent of barley, 85 (78) per cent of oats, 84 (77) per cent of canola and 89 (82) per cent of dry peas are in good to excellent condition. Most cereals in the region are at the beginning of the flowering stage.
  • Surface and sub-surface soil moisture conditions improved by seven and one per cent, respectively and are now rated as 80 and 83 per cent good to excellent, with two per cent excessive.
  • Pasture conditions (tame hay conditions in brackets) are rated as 32 (37) per cent poor to fair, 56 (56) per cent good and 12 (7) per cent excellent. Also, hay supplies and pasture remain a concern for livestock producers.
Region Four: North West (Barrhead, Edmonton, Leduc, Drayton Valley, Athabasca)
  • Variable amounts of rain in the region have led to varying crop conditions among counties. Provincially, (5-year averages in the brackets), 74 (71) per cent of spring wheat and oats, 73 (69) per cent of barley, 61 (69) per cent of canola and 84 (73) per cent of dry peas are in good to excellent condition. Most cereals are in the flowering stage.
  • Surface and sub-surface soil moisture declined from a week ago and are rated as 52 and 58 per cent good to excellent, respectively, with one per cent excessive.
  • Pasture conditions (tame hay conditions in brackets) are rated as 70 (69) per cent poor to fair, 27 (28) per cent good and 3 (3) per cent excellent.
Region Five: Peace River (Fairview, Falher, Grande Prairie, Valleyview)
  • Warm, dry and windy conditions have been the dominant weather pattern in the region, while in some areas rain has not been substantial. The lack of moisture in these areas has also slowed down crop development. Most cereals are now in the flowering stage.
  • Regionally, (5-year averages in the brackets), 89 (65) per cent of wheat, 89 (60 and 64) per cent of barley and oats, 87 (58) per cent of canola and 89 (67) per cent of dry peas are in good to excellent condition.
  • While surface soil moisture has declined by six per cent, sub-surface soil moisture improved three per cent from last week and are now rated as 82 and 83 per cent good to excellent, respectively, with six and four per cent excessive.
  • Pasture conditions are rated as 20 per cent poor to fair, 68 per cent good and 12 per cent excellent, with similar ratings reported for tame hay.

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

July 20, 2018

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 2018 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 Marian Elson.
This information published to the web on July 20, 2018.
Last Reviewed/Revised on August 10, 2018.