Farmers in the southeast are finishing up fall work “earlier than normal”, according to Shannon Friesen, crop specialist for the Weyburn area.
The southeast received another week of warm and dry weather, with no rainfall, and it is still to dry to seed winter wheat or other fall crops.
“Most farmers are finishing up their harvest operations,” said Friesen. “Some producers are trying to dry sloughs so they can seed them next year, others are hauling bales or aerating grain.”
Producers in the southeast now have 95 per cent of the 2012 crop in the bin, up from 90 per cent last week, according to the weekly crop report from the Ministry of Agricultural. Crop district 1A has 98 per cent combined, CD 1B 96 per cent, CD 2A 92 per cent, CD 2B 95 per cent and CD 3ASE has 86 per cent combined.
The crops that remain to be harvest include flax, some cereal crops, corn and soybeans. “It was an average crop for most farmers, with a few producers reporting a bumper crop for the cereals,” said Friesen.
Topsoil moisture conditions are deteriorating as the majority of the region has not received rainfall since early August.
“A few producers were able to seed a little winter wheat, but now it is way too dry to do anything because the seeds won’t germinate,” said Friesen.
Topsoil moisture ratings on cropland are reported as 29 per cent adequate, 47 per cent short and 24 per cent very short. On hay land and pasture, topsoil moisture is rated as 23 per cent adequate, 44 per cent short and 33 per cent very short.
Pasture conditions are rated as one per cent excellent, 28 per cent good, 42 per cent fair, 25 per cent poor and four per cent very poor. 85 per cent of livestock producers have adequate water supplies for their livestock, while 15 per cent are reporting inadequate water supplies.
Some producers are reporting heated crops in the bin and many are now aerating grain. “It is very important for farmers to be checking those bins right now because we are getting reports of heated grain,” said Friesen.
Many producers are spraying for weeds but fall weed growth has been minimal in the dry conditions. Producers are busy combining, hauling bales, working the fields and spraying weeds.
As farmers start preparing for the next crop season, Friesen recommended that they get their seed quality checked. “They should have tests on germination, vigor and get a complete disease package done.”