Wet weather continues to drag out harvest operations

Alberta crop conditions as of August 23

The wet weather pattern that has persisted throughout the entire growing season continued to affect the province this week with amounts varying from showers in the South to light rain in the Central and North East regions and heavy rain in the North West.

Only the Peace received an extended period of dry weather which allowed crops to mature and harvest to get underway before precipitation shut operations down. A map on the Alberta Agriculture website shows the accumulative rainfall since April 1. Actually, very little of this precipitation fell prior to mid-May so virtually two-thirds of the province has received 350 mm (14 inches) or more of precipitation since May 20. Harvest progress has been minimal this week, advancing by less than four percentage points to six per cent of crops in the bin. An additional six per cent of crops are swathed.

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The provincial yield index moved up slightly with yield improvements projected for spring wheat, durum, oats and winter wheat. Yield estimates for barley, canola and peas declined marginally. The yield of field peas in the North East and North West regions has been extremely variable. Pea harvest has been slowed in these regions by flattened crop.

Pasture and hay continue to be rated highly with 77 per cent rated in good or excellent condition. Second cut haying is underway in all regions except the Peace which is not expecting a second crop. Early second cut yields are very good and quality is fair to good depending on harvesting delays due to precipitation.

Click here to read the full report on the Alberta Agriculture website, complete with graphics and a breakdown by regions.

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