Manitoba crops could use a drink: report

Crops in many areas of Manitoba are starting to dry out, according to the latest weekly report from Manitoba Agriculture for the week ended July 4.

Precipitation is below average in many areas, and fields in the southwest region and in western parts of the central region could use moisture.

Despite that, most crops are currently rated in good to excellent condition with warmer weather improving growth, according to the report.

Farmers have started spraying fungicide in spring wheat to control fusarium head blight, but overall, insect and disease pressures are low.

Haying is underway with the first cut expected to yield average or below average. Alfalfa weevil is reducing quality in some areas.

In the southwest region, crops could use more moisture despite last week’s rain. About 45 percent of spring cereals are heading with isolated reports of rust. About 45 percent of canola is flowering. Flax has started to flower, most soybeans are in the third to fourth trifoliate stage, most peas are flowering and sunflowers and corn are in the vegetative stage.

Most crops in the northwest region are in good to excellent condition, although a lot of development stage variability has been noted. About 20 to 50 percent of spring wheat is heading, 60 percent of canola is bolting with 25 to 50 percent flowering. About 30 percent of peas are blooming. Soybeans are mostly in the vegetative stage.

In the central region, most wheat is in the late flag or flowering stages. Canola ranges from bolting to flowering with many fields seeing variable development due to uneven emergence. Most corn is in the V3 to V8 stage. Soybeans range from the first to fourth trifoliate stages.

In the eastern region, early-seeded wheat is flowering with most of the rest in the head emergence stage. Canola ranges from blooming to early flowering with later seeding canola bolting. Soybeans range from third trifoliate to the R1 stage. Corn is in the V5 to V7 stage.

In the Interlake region, spring cereals range from the four- to six-leaf stage to heading. Winter cereals are mostly at the milk stage. Canola varies from seedling to 40 percent flowering. Soybeans and sunflowers are in the vegetative stage while corn ranges from the V6 to V12 stage.

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