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Winter wheat: Planted area for harvest in 2011 is estimated at 41.0 million acres, up 10 percent from 2010 but 5 percent below 2009. Seeding began last August and during September was slightly behind the 5-year average. During October, seeding progressed slightly ahead of the 5-year average. More acres were seeded this year due to the early row crop harvest and higher prices. The winter wheat crop condition at the end of November was rated 47 percent good to excellent compared with 63 percent the previous year.
Hard Red Winter (HRW) wheat seeded area is about 29.6 million acres, up 4 percent from 2010. Acreage is above last year=s level in all States in the HRW growing area except Nebraska, New Mexico, and Wyoming. The largest acreage increases are in Kansas and South Dakota, up 400,000 and 300,000 acres, respectively. The dry fall limited planted acres in some States and lack of moisture continues to be a concern across much of the HRW growing area.
Soft Red Winter (SRW) wheat seeded area is about 7.76 million acres, up 47 percent from last year. Large acreage increases from last year are estimated in all SRW growing States. Record or near record low acreages occurred in many States last year due to the late row crop harvest during the fall of 2009. The early row crop harvest and dry conditions this fall allowed many of those acres to be seeded. Farmers in several States reported trouble finding enough seed due to the large increase in acres seeded. The largest acreage increases are in Arkansas, Illinois, and Missouri. Winter wheat in Arkansas is up 250,000 acres, 125 percent above 2010. Illinois is up 410,000 acres, 124 percent above last year. Acreage seeded in Missouri is up 380,000 acres, a 103 percent increase from 2010.
White Winter wheat seeded area totals nearly 3.66 million acres, up 4 percent from 2010. Planted acreage in the Pacific Northwest (Idaho, Oregon, and Washington) is up from last year. Winter wheat planted area is up 90,000 acres from 2010 in Idaho, down 10,000 in Oregon, and unchanged in Washington. Seeding started off slow but by early October was ahead of the 5-year average in all three States. By November 7, seeding was virtually complete in the region with 96 percent of the acreage emerged in Washington, 90 percent emerged in Idaho and 78 percent emerged in Oregon.
Durum wheat: Seedings in Arizona and California for 2011 harvest are estimated at 235,000 acres, up 21 percent from the 2010, but 23 percent below 2009. Planted acreage is unchanged from last year in Arizona but up 40,000 in California. Planting is ongoing in California's San Joaquin and Imperial Valleys. No major problems with the crop have been reported.