According to the Ministry of Agricultures latest crop report, west-central producers made considerable progress over the past week, and even more during the weekend to push the west-central area over 92 per cent done seeding.

Field peas are nearly complete, flax, spring wheat, canola and lentils all coming in second at over 90 per cent. Just under that mark is barley at 89 per cent, mustard at 88 per cent, triticale at 87, perennial forage at 86 per cent, durum and canary seed both at 85 per cent, and finally oats at 82. The crops needing the most progression at chickpeas at 57 per cent, and soybeans at 46 per cent. 

With the cooler spring so far, the report shared the following crop development updates.

  • Sixty-three per cent of winter cereals are in the tillering stage, 28 per cent at stem elongation and nine per cent at flag leaf.
  • Thirty-two per cent of spring cereals are at the pre-emergent stage, 56 per cent at the seedling stage and 12 per cent are at the tillering stage.
  • Twenty-five per cent of pulse crops are at the pre-emergent stage with 71 per cent at the seedling stage and four per cent at the vegetative stage of development.
  • Forty per cent of canola and mustard are at the pre-emergent stage and 60 per cent are at the seedling stage.
  • Sixty-two per cent of the flax is at the pre-emergent stage with 23 per cent at the seedling stage and 15 per cent starting stem elongation.

Another week of rainfall wasn't as consistent as what we saw in May. The Asquith area got 41 mm, followed by nearby Rosetown at 38 mm, and Biggar 30 mm. Across the region the Smiley area reported 22 mm of rain, and Marsden collected 18 mm.

Because of the continued rain, topsoil conditions have also continued to stay strong.

  • Cropland topsoil moisture is reported at one per cent surplus, 96 per cent adequate and three per cent short.
  • Hayland topsoil moisture is one per cent surplus, 94 per cent adequate and five per cent short.
  • Pasture topsoil moisture is rated as one per cent surplus, 93 per cent adequate and six per cent short.

Wind gusts of around 80 km/h were another environmental factor for producers last week. That caused minor crop damage, along with excessive moisture and waterfowl according to the report. The week prior crops extension specialist Matt Struthers said that pests are becoming an issue again, as farms continue to look for flea beetles, cutworms and grasshoppers.

The home-stretch for seeding is the main focus for producers right now. Other activities right now included spraying when possible, land rolling and rock picking, and livestock producers wrapping up calving operations and moving cattle to pasture.

Seeding is 94 per cent complete province-wide. The northeast and east-central regions are also at 92 per cent, next up being the northwest at 93 per cent complete, and then the southeast and southwest are both moving along nicely with a completion rate of 96 per cent.