Warm, dry weather advances seeding; crop emergence in early stages

Alberta Crop Report: Conditions as of May 14, 2019

The warm dry weather has attributed to substantial seeding progress provincially. Last week’s average on all crops was slightly above 16 per cent while this week’s numbers for major crops is 42 per cent complete, which is sizably higher than the five year average of 25. Across Alberta, 72 per cent of peas are in the ground, 52 per cent of spring wheat, 40 per cent of barley, 28 per cent of canola and 19 per cent of oats. At this rate the seeding of major crops should be more or less wrapped up by the first of June.

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Crop emergence for major crops is in the early stages and the average is at 5 per cent for the province. Following tradition, the south region’s crop emergence average is the exception at 19 per cent, essentially bumping up that number. The weather not only advanced seeding and emergence progress, hay and pasture fields have also benefited as they are developing and starting to see some green.

Surface soil moisture ratings in the South and North West regions saw little change as compared to last week, while the North East declined somewhat. The Central and Peace regions were impacted the most. Provincially good and excellent estimates fell 6 points in turn increasing the fair and poor ratings. Since April 1st, the Western portion of the province has accumulated higher amounts of precipitation while the Eastern and Peace portions are still looking for a good general rain.

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

  • Seeding progress moved from 48 on all crops to 67 per cent complete on major crops over the last week.
  • Reports indicate 88 per cent of peas are seeded with 28 emerged, 53 per cent of canola seeded with 7
    emerged, and 69 per cent of spring wheat seeded with 24 emerged.
  • Signs of irrigation kicking off.
  • Recent heat and moisture have supported a good start on perennials. The upcoming forecasted precipitation
    should contribute to further improvements.
  • Sub-surface soil moisture is estimated as 41 per cent good or excellent, 39 fair and 20 poor.

Region Two: Central (Rimbey, Airdrie, Coronation, Oyen)

  • Seeding progress moved from 7 on all crops to 40 per cent complete on major crops over the last week.
  • Reports indicate 65 per cent of peas, 53 of spring wheat and 23 of canola are seeded.
  • Emergence of major crops is at 1 per cent which is relative to the late start to seeding.
  • While forage and pastures were slow to start, fields are showing signs of growth and will benefit from any
    precipitation.
  • Sub-surface soil moisture is estimated as 55 per cent good or excellent, 30 fair and 15 poor.

Region Three: North East (Smoky Lake, Vermilion, Camrose, Provost)

  • Seeding progress moved from 2 on all crops to 32 per cent complete on major crops over the last week.
  • Reports indicate that 71 per cent of peas, 21 of canola and 44 of spring wheat are seeded.
  • Pea emergence is at 7 per cent, while other major crops have yet to surface.
  • Recent heat improved forage growth. More moisture is needed to stimulate all crop growth after recent dry
    windy conditions.
  • Sub-surface soil moisture is estimated as 70 per cent good or excellent, 26 fair, and both poor and excessive
    rated at 2.

Region Four: North West (Barrhead, Edmonton, Leduc, Drayton Valley, Athabasca)

  • Seeding progress moved from 1 on all crops to 39 per cent complete on major crops over the last week.
  • Reports indicate that 75 per cent of peas, 32 of canola and 50 of spring wheat are seeded.
  • Low numbers for seeding progress last week have understandably resulted in no emergence this week.
  • Many of the 2018 unharvested acres are now in the bin, with some acres left out in the Mayerthorpe area.
  • Forage and pasture crops have advanced due to warmer temperatures.
  • Sub-surface soil moisture is estimated as 88 per cent good or excellent, both fair and excessive are rated at 6.
    Region Five: Peace River (Fairview, Falher, Grande Prairie, Valleyview)
  • Seeding progress moved from 2 on all crops to 29 per cent complete on major crops over the last week.
  • Reports indicate that 47 per cent of peas, 20 of canola and 39 of spring wheat are seeded.
  • Nominal emergence is relative to the late start to seeding.
  • Sub-surface soil moisture is estimated as 73 per cent good or excellent, 13 fair, 3 poor and 11 at excessive.

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