Following are details from the state Crop/Weather Report:
Kansas: Conditions were dry and warm last week as only light precipitation fell at a few locations across Kansas. Reports of light snow did not amount to much moisture, as no weather station reported more than 0.3 inch. Since the beginning of the year, 42 of 52 weather stations have recorded below normal precipitation totals with Dodge City, Liberal, and Elkhart in the Southwest District receiving less than 8 inches. Temperatures were warmer than normal throughout most of Kansas last week as highs ranged from the low 60’s to 74 degrees in Parsons, while lows were mostly in the teens and 20’s. Kansas farmers averaged 5.9 days suitable for field work last week, as the dry conditions allowed for unimpeded harvest progress in most areas. Topsoil moisture supplies declined to 19 percent very short, 25 percent short, 53 percent adequate, and 3 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were rated 32 percent very short, 32 percent short, 35 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Four percent of the winter wheat crop has yet to emerge, ahead of 8 percent left for both the previous year and the 5-year average. Wheat condition was rated as 3 percent very poor, 8 percent poor, 42 percent fair, 41 percent good, and 6 percent excellent. This was better than last year’s crop at this time, that was rated 8 percent very poor, 18 percent poor, 38 percent fair, 32 percent good and 4 percent excellent.
Texas: Areas of North East Texas received up to 6 inches of rainfall, areas of the Edwards Plateau, East Texas, and South Central Texas received up to 3 inches of rainfall, while the rest of the state observed little to no rainfall. Emerging and germinating winter wheat was in need of moisture in areas of the High Plains. Producers released grazing cattle on irrigated small grain fields in areas of the Plains. Winter wheat continued to make good progress in areas of the Low Plains, the Cross Timbers, the Blacklands, and the Edwards Plateau due to recent rainfall. In southern areas of the state, winter wheat and oats continued to show signs of stress due to lack of moisture.
Oklahoma: The entire state received temperatures below freezing, with the Northern and Panhandle area’s receiving the longest hours below freezing. Mesonet reported hours below freezing ranged from one hour in Southeastern Oklahoma to 46 hours in the Panhandle. Freezing temperatures ended the warm season grass production for this year. Mesonet reported scattered rainfall across the state with the Southeast district reporting the highest recorded amount at 1.54 inches, while five of the nine districts recorded 0.35 inches or less. The Panhandle, North Central and West Central reported no precipitation last week. The state drought conditions continued to improve as four out of five ratings showed slight improvement from the recent rains. Topsoil moisture conditions declined slightly this week due to high winds across the state, resulting in 78 percent of the state rated in the adequate to short categories, compared to 82 percent the previous week. Subsoil moisture conditions improved slightly with 84 percent rated short to very short, compared to 87 percent the previous week. There were 6.1 days suitable for field work. Wheat, canola, rye, and oats conditions continued to be rated good to fair. Wheat producers grazed wheat fields earlier than normal due to hay and pasture shortages. Wheat emerged reached 93 percent, four points above the five-year average. Seedbed preparation for oat ground was 85 percent complete, four points behind last year.
Nebraska: For the week ending November 20, 2011, snow in portions of the west and south slowed final wrap up of fall harvest, according to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, Nebraska Field Office. Soil moisture supplies continued below average for this time of year. Temperatures for the week averaged 3 degrees below normal for the state. High temperatures were mainly in the 60’s and lows dipped into the single digits. The eastern half of the state was dry with snow being recorded in the Panhandle, Southwest and South Central counties. Winter Wheat conditions rated 0 percent very poor, 1 poor, 20 fair, 69 good, and 10 excellent, well above 45 percent good to excellent last year and 62 average.
Colorado: The western region of Colorado experienced above average precipitation while the rest of the State had below average precipitation. Above average temperatures were common around the State helping farmers progress with harvest. Farmers were allowed 6.2 days in the field for operations last week. Winter wheat was 99 percent emerged and in mostly fair to good condition by the end of last week.