U.S. spring wheat seeding ahead of average pace

CNS Canada — Hard red spring wheat planting in the U.S. is underway and advancing faster than average due to favourable warm, dry weather in many regions, according to the North Dakota Wheat Commission’s crop progress report.

As of Sunday, 17 per cent of the U.S. spring wheat crop was in the ground, up from just five per cent last year and the average of 11 per cent, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data.

South Dakota had the most wheat seeded, with 44 per cent of intended acreage planted as of Sunday. Minnesota’s spring wheat planting was 20 per cent complete, followed by 10 per cent in Montana and five per cent in North Dakota.

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There wasn’t any durum seeding activity reported in North Dakota, as some areas in the state are still too wet to seed.

Forecasts call for warmer weather this week, which should help planting progress advance, the commission report said.

Total U.S. spring wheat area is expected to be around 13 million acres, according to the USDA’s prospective plantings report in late March.

Due to drier conditions and an earlier than average start to seeding, however, final acreage numbers will likely be a bit higher.

The U.S. Drought Monitor shows much of the U.S. spring wheat region experiencing abnormally dry to moderate drought conditions, with the exception of Montana. Because of this, moisture will be needed as crop development progress, the report said.

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