Weather dom­i­nates Saskatchewan Agri­cul­ture’s fi­nal 2018 Crop Re­port

The Southwest Booster - - OPINION -

Sum­mer dry weather and fall mois­ture were the two main themes in the year end crop re­port is­sued by Saskatchewan Agri­cul­ture.

The re­port notes that yields in the South­west were neg­a­tively im­pacted by the weather con­di­tions.

“The ex­tended pe­riod of hot and dry con­di­tions neg­a­tively af­fected crop pro­duc­tion in many ar­eas,” the crop re­port high­lights. “Over­all crop yields vary greatly across the re­gion, with many ar­eas re­port­ing sig­nif­i­cantly lower yields than nor­mal.”

The South­west was be­low the pro­vin­cial crop yield av­er­age in 13 of 15 crop cat­e­gories, and they tied for the pro­vin­cial av­er­age in the other two cat­e­gories.

The es­ti­mated crop yields show South­west Win­ter wheat yielded 25 bushels com­pared to the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 38. Hard Red Spring Wheat yielded 30 bushels com­pared to the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 43. Oats num­bers were 45 bushels in the South­west ver­sus the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 82. Canola to­tals were also down in the re­gion, with an av­er­age of 28 bushels com­pared to the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 38. Peas had a tough year with an av­er­age of 23 bushels com­pared to the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 35. Soy­bean yields also re­flected the tough grow­ing sea­son, with the South­west av­er­ag­ing 12 bushels ver­sus the pro­vin­cial av­er­age of 22.

The long stretches of rain along with some snow in Septem­ber loos­ened their grip in Oc­to­ber, al­low­ing the ma­jor­ity of the re­gion’s crop to be har­vested. Small acres of fall rye and oats were not taken off the fields.

South­west pro­duc­ers also chose to not plant as many acres of win­ter ce­re­als as past years.

“Al­though rain and snow was re­ceived in Septem­ber, many pro­duc­ers did not seed win­ter ce­re­als, as fields were still too dry and there were con­cerns that crops would not ger­mi­nate and es­tab­lish prop­erly prior to win­ter,” the crop re­port for the re­gion noted.

“Top­soil and sub­soil mois­ture re­mains a con­cern for the ma­jor­ity of the re­gion. Al­though con­di­tions have im­proved thanks to re­cent rain and snow, fields will need sig­nif­i­cant mois­ture be­fore seed­ing time to re­plen­ish what was lost this past grow­ing sea­son. Crop­land top­soil mois­ture head­ing into win­ter is rated as 59 per cent ad­e­quate, 37 per cent short and four per cent very short. Hay land and pas­ture top­soil mois­ture con­di­tions are rated as 39 per cent ad­e­quate, 51 per­cent short and 10 per cent very short.”

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