Seeding progresses ahead of five-year average

More farmers have been able to get out into the field this week.

Seeding is up from nine per cent last week to 38 per cent this week. This is well ahead of the five-year average (2016-2020) of 22 per cent.

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Crops that have been seeded so far are slow to emerge due to cool temperatures and little soil moisture.

The southwest region is leading the province, with 56 per cent of the crop seeded. Forty-four per cent of crops are seeded in the southeast, 35 per cent in the west-central, 34 per cent in the northwest, 24 per cent in the east-central and 22 per cent in the northeast region.

The southwest saw good amounts of precipitation over the past week that will hopefully improve germination conditions. The Admiral area recorded the most rain and snow precipitation at 25 mm followed by the Shaunavon and Rockglen areas which both reported receiving 20 mm. Little to no precipitation was reported in the other regions of the province.

Moisture conditions saw a slight drop between this week and the previous week. Cropland topsoil moisture is rated as zero per cent surplus, 31 per cent adequate, 45 per cent short and 23 per cent very short. Hay and pasture land topsoil moisture is rated as zero per cent surplus, 22 per cent adequate, 45 per cent short and 32 per cent very short.

Dry conditions are raising concerns about fires in both cropland and pastures, several rural municipalities across the province have issued fire bans and producers are reminded to be extremely careful when operating machinery and equipment that have the potential to spark or get very hot.

Producers continue working in their fields seeding, harrowing, rock picking and rolling. Very little weed emergence has allowed farmers to postpone spraying for the time being. Some producers have postponed further seeding as they wait for rain.

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