Sask. planting advances, but 5 percent of cropland likely left unseeded

Winnipeg, May 25 (CNS Canada) – Most Saskatchewan farmers made good planting progress during the week ended May 22, but at least five percent of the intended acres in the province will likely end up unseeded this year due to excess moisture, according to the latest report from Saskatchewan Agriculture.

Warm and dry weather during the week saw seeding advance to 60 percent complete provincially. That compares with 30 percent the previous week and the five-year average of 65 percent.

The progress remains highly variable, with producers in the southeast 80 percent done, and those in the northeast only 25 percent finished.

The estimated five percent of the intended area that won’t be seeded this year is concentrated in the northern regions, with 15 percent of the northeast expected to be unseeded and only one percent of the southwest.

Much of the province received no moisture in the week to May 22, but fields remain wet in more northern regions. Other parts of Saskatchewan could use rain to help crops germinate and emerge. The rain on May 24 will be recorded in next week’s report.

Provincially, cropland topsoil moisture was rated as 11 percent surplus, 79 percent adequate, nine percent short and one percent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture was rated as seven percent surplus, 76 percent adequate, 15 percent short and two percent very short.

The majority of crops are either at or behind normal developmental stages for this time of year.

Overall, emerged crops were in good condition, although there was some damage caused by strong winds, localized flooding and lack of moisture. Hard frost last week damaged some alfalfa, winter cereal and canola fields. Some fields will be re-seeded in the coming weeks.

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