HRW Wheat Conditions Improve

March 19, 2012 10:26 AM

According to state crop reports, the hard red winter wheat crops in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas improved slightly from last week. Warmth across the region accelerated growth. Kansas reports 12% of its crop has jointed, with 53% jointed in Oklahoma.


Crop condition
Very Poor
Kansas -
Okla. - 03/19/12
Texas - 03/19/12

Here are some of the key observations in the state monthly summaries:

Kansas:Kansas producers experienced another week of windy conditions and unseasonably warm temperatures that saw several new record high temperatures. Average temperatures ranged from 11 degrees above normal at Johnson in the Southwest District to 24 degrees above normal at Topeka in the East Central District. Twenty of the 52 stations saw temperatures 20 degrees or more above normal. Precipitation was mostly light across the State as only 7 stations received over one half inch. Pittsburg led the State with 1.25 inches and was the only station to receive over an inch. Kansas farmers averaged 5.8 days suitable for fieldwork last week with the western two thirds of the State having more than 6 days. Topsoil moisture supplies were rated as 12 percent very short, 26 percent short, 60 percent adequate, and 2 percent surplus. A year ago, topsoil moisture was rated as 17 percent very short, 20 percent short, 55 percent adequate and 8 percent surplus. The Southwest District continued to be the driest with 81 percent of topsoil rated as short to very short of moisture. Subsoil moisture supplies showed a slight decrease on Sunday and were rated 13 percent very short, 30 percent short, 56 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Kansas farmers were busy spraying wheat for weeds, along with preparing for seeding row crops. The warm weather has helped the wheat crop grow quickly after emerging from dormancy. Twelve percent of crop has jointed across Kansas, ahead of 4 percent last year and the 5-year average of 6 percent. About a quarter of the acreage in the South Central and Southeast Districts has jointed. The condition of the crop was rated as 3 percent very poor, 8 percent poor, 35 percent fair, 46 percent good, and 8 percent excellent. Last year at this time the wheat condition was 14 percent very poor, 23 percent, poor, 36 percent fair, 25 percent good and 2 percent excellent. Five percent of the wheat has experienced light damage due to winterkill with an additional 1 percent suffering moderate damage. Wind damage improved from the previous week’s rating to 11 percent light, 4 percent moderate, and 1 percent severe damage while freeze damage was only 3 percent light. Insect and disease infestations are both very limited at this time with only 7 percent of the acreage having light damage for either, comparable to last year.

Oklahoma: Spring-like temperatures were felt throughout the state with average temperatures in the 60s and average highs in the upper 70s. The overall high temperature for every climate district was above 80 degrees, with a statewide high of 89 degrees recorded at Beaver in the Panhandle. Multiple temperature records were broken, including the highest minimum temperature for Oklahoma City every day from March 14-17 as well as multiple days in Tulsa and a record high temperature for March 13th in Ponca City at 84 degrees. The above average temperatures over several weeks meant rapid growth for small grains and some recovery in pasture and range conditions. Wheat jointing and canola blooming were significantly ahead of the previous year. Very little precipitation was measured this week, averaging only a hundredth of an inch for the entire state. In the East Central District, no Mesonet station recorded measurable rainfall for the week. The highest recorded total was 0.18 of an inch in Arnett, which fell Sunday. This was the beginning of a storm system which brought rain into the next week, but also produced several small tornadoes in Greer County. Spring fieldwork was ahead of normal for most crops, but further preparations and planting were on hold as producers await more rainfall. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated mostly adequate with 33 percent rated short to very short. Subsoil moisture continued to be rated mostly adequate to short. There were only 5.5 days suitable for field work. Development of all small grains and canola were ahead of normal, aided by the abnormally warm temperatures. Conditions continued to be rated mostly good, with 14 percent of wheat and 9 percent of canola rated excellent, respectively. Wheat jointing was 53 percent complete by Sunday, 17 points ahead of last year, and 22 points ahead of the five-year average.

Texas: Most areas of the state received rainfall last week. Areas of Central and East Texas received up to two inches during the week while the rest of the state observed scattered showers. Rainfall and warm temperatures helped wheat and oats progress well across most of the state. In Central and South Texas, wheat and oats were beginning to head. Wet conditions had some small grain producers scouting fields for fungus and insects. In parts of the High Plains, wheat was in need of additional moisture and irrigated fields were being watered.


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