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Monthly State Reports Reflect Winter Wheat Conditions Improve

February 26, 2013
By: Julianne Johnston, Pro Farmer Digital Managing Editor

Following are details from the state Crop/Weather Report:

Kansas: Snow brought much needed moisture throughout the State at the end of February. All 53 stations received trace amounts of moisture, with Johnson reporting 0.19 inch for the lowest and Lawrence reporting 2.69 inches for the highest. Temperatures varied widely during the month with a low of -4 degrees at Alton to a high of 7 3 in Ashland . There were 11.6 days suitable for fieldwork, compared to 14 days a year ago. Topsoil moisture supplies as of February 24 were rated 27 percent very short, 34 percent short, 36 percent adequate, and 3 percent surplus; a slight improvement from the beginning of the month. While improving somewhat, the Northwest District is still the driest district with 78 percent reported being short to very short for topsoil moisture, compared to 97 percent a month ago. Welcomed precipitation in most areas slightly improved the condition of winter wheat during February. The crop condition was rated 12 percent very poor, 24 percent poor, 41 percent fair, 22 percent good, and 1 percent excellent. Wind damage was rated as 1 percent severe, 3 percent moderate, 13 percent light, and 83 percent with no damage, while freeze damage was rated as 1 percent severe, 3 percent moderate, 10 percent light, and 86 percent with no damage.

Texas: Precipitation remained scarce for much of the state, however districts to the north and east saw up to an inch of rainfall with pockets experiencing up to two inches. The Northern High Plains received light to heavy snowfall, providing some much - needed moisture. Conditions in West, Central and South Texas continued to be dry and windy, and were still in need of additional moisture. Recent precipitation in the Northern and Southern Plains proved mostly adequate to sustain the current wheat crop condition, but more moisture will be required in the near future. In the Blacklands and East Texas, recent moisture provided a significant boost to the wheat crop. Non-irrigated small grains in South Texas continued to struggle due to dry conditions. The crop condition was rated 17% very poor, 28% poor, 37% fair, 16% good and 2% excellent.

Oklahoma: Multiple rain and snow events throughout February provided improvements to soil moisture conditions. A storm came through February 12, with the heaviest rainfall totals up to an inch in southern Oklahoma. Snow was also falling in the north and the west but most melted quickly, though totals as high as 5 inches in the Panhandle and far western Oklahoma were observed. February 20 - 21 two separate snowfall events accumulated as much as 13.5 inches in Alva, with widespread snowfall across the state at varying amounts. The Panhandle observed snow totals up to 12 inches in localized areas on the 21st. Another system moved into the state beginning Sunday night the 24th, with totals still to be seen. Precipitation totals for the month to date averaged 2.13 inches for the state. These totals only include rain and melted snow through February 24th. McAlester recorded 3.54 inches for the period, while Kenton in the Panhandle recorded only 0.26 of an inch. Although the precipitation for the last 30 days has been above normal, statewide precipitation for the period since September 1st was only 63 percent of normal, ranging from 55 percent of normal in the North Central district to 77 percent of normal in the Panhandle. Some improvements to crop conditions were reported, with wheat, canola and rye moving from mostly poor to very poor in January to mostly fair to poor in February. This allowed for a small increase in the amount of the crop being grazed, though grazing was reported to be significantly less than normal. Pasture condition ratings have not yet shown significant improvements, though some areas have reported new growth in winter forage from the last few snow and rain events. Overall some recharge of ponds and lakes has occurred, but water levels are still very low. Topsoil moisture conditions improved greatly from January, with 43 percent rated adequate and even two percent rated surplus. Subsoil moisture conditions were still rated mostly very short, with nine percent rated adequate. Conditions of small grains and canola improved over the past month due to the available moisture. Wheat, canola and rye conditions were rated mostly fair to poor while oats were still rated mostly poor to very poor. Only 26 percent of the wheat crop was being grazed, 19 points below 2012 and 10 points below the five-year average. The wheat crop is rated 19% very poor, 35% poor, 37% fair, 9% good and none excellent.

Nebraska: For the month of February 2013, snow fall across the eastern two thirds of the state brought much needed moisture to drought impacted areas, according to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, Nebraska Field Office. Snow accumulations were heaviest in the Southwest and South Central Districts with some areas exceeding 12 inches of snow. However, the Panhandle received only limited amounts of precipitation for the month. Wheat condition continued well below year ago levels with most of the crop rated fair to poor. Temperatures averaged 1degree below normal across the southern Panhandle and portions of the southeast. Most of the remainder of the state was 1-3 degrees above normal. Precipitation was above normal in the central third of the state while the western and eastern thirds were mostly below normal. Snow depth averaged 6 inches across the state with 9-10 inches common in Southwestern and South Central Districts. During the last week of the month, soil temperatures ranged from 28 to 33 degrees. Wheat conditions statewide rated 14 percent very poor, 36 poor, 38 fair, 12 good, and 0 excellent, well below last year.

Colorado: NA


 

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