Many producers in the province have finished seeding, with others very close to done. Ninety-six per cent of the crop is in the ground, up from 89 per cent last week and just slightly behind the five-year average (2018-2022) of 97 per cent. Rain was welcomed by many to improve moisture conditions, but also caused delays for those trying to finish seeding. There were many reports of rain in the form of heavy storms, which resulted in localized flooding in some areas. There have also been reports of heavy winds and hail causing damage to crops and property in some areas.
Producers in the west-central region have virtually completed seeding with 99 per cent of their crop now seeded. Seeding is at 98 per cent completion in the northeast and northwest regions of the province, 96 per cent in the southwest, and 94 per cent in the east-central and southeast regions.
Rainfall was received throughout the province last week. While it was welcomed by producers in the drier areas of the province, it also caused flooding and delays for many. Much of the rain was localized, with some areas receiving trace amounts and many receiving more. There was 64 mm of precipitation in the Glenavon area, 53 mm in Mossbank, 45 mm in Rhein, 34 mm in Garrick and 11 mm in Mayfair.
Moisture conditions are overall improved in the province this week. Cropland topsoil moisture is rated as seven per cent surplus, 78 per cent adequate, 14 per cent short and one per cent very short. Hay and pasture land topsoil moisture is rated as five per cent surplus, 75 per cent adequate, 17 per cent short and three per cent very short.
Heat and moisture in much of the province have supported crop development. Warm temperatures with high night-time lows have progressed some crops ahead of normal. Thirty-one per cent of the fall cereal crops are reported as being in the jointing stage, 26 per cent are in the shot blade stage and 12 per cent are in the heading stage, while 46 per cent of the spring cereals are emerging and 40 per cent are tillering. Forty-two per cent of the canola is emerging and 42 per cent is in the seedling stage, along with 34 per cent of flax being in the seedling stage. Forty-nine per cent of pulse crops are emerging and 43 per cent are in the vegetative stage.
There were various causes of crop damage this past week. Scattered, but widespread storms caused flooding, hail and wind damage throughout multiple areas of the province. Heat and drought are also causing stress in the crops. There were reports of insect damage caused by grasshoppers and flea beetles, as well as gophers.
Producers have been busy finishing up seed, spraying, checking crops, picking rocks and moving cattle to pasture. Producers are encouraged to take all safety precautions in all the work they do. The Farm Stress Line can help by providing support for producers toll-free at 1-800-667-4442.
A complete, printable version of the Crop Report is available online at https://www.saskatchewan.ca/crop-report.
Follow the 2023 Crop Report on Twitter at @SKAgriculture.
(Government of Saskatchewan news release)