Weather dominates Saskatchewan Agriculture’s final 2018 Crop Report
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.”