Farmers made significant progress in harvesting this week thanks to dry weather in most areas of the province, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s Weekly Crop Report.
Eighty-nine per cent of the 2013 crop is now combined and eight per cent is swathed or ready to straight-cut. The five-year average (2008-2012) for this time of year is 85 per cent combined and 11 per cent swathed or ready to straight-cut.
The harvest is most advanced in the west-central region of Saskatchewan, where 97 per cent of the crop is combined.
Eighty-five per cent is combined in the northeast region including Prince Albert, 94 per cent in the southwest, 83 per cent in the east-central, 85 per cent in the southeast and 92 per cent in the northwest. Harvest progress by crop district ranges from 99 to 76 per cent combined.
Of the crop that has been harvested, most areas are reporting average to above-average yields.
Spring wheat average yields have been reported at 47 bushels per acre, durum 44 bushels per acre, barley 69 bushels per acre, canola 38 bushels per acre and peas 43 bushels per acre. Average yields vary from region to region, depending on seeding conditions and growing season moisture.
Provincial spring wheat quality is estimated to be above average. Meanwhile, spring wheat grades are estimated as 59 per cent 1CW, 31 per cent 2CW, nine per cent 3CW and one per cent CW feed.
Across Saskatchewan, the amount of rainfall ranged from nil to 36 millimetres. The northwestern region received most of the province’s rainfall during the week of Oct. 1-7.
Topsoil moisture on provincial cropland is rated as two per cent surplus, 65 per cent adequate, 25 per cent short and eight per cent very short. Topsoil moisture on hay land and pasture is rated as one per cent surplus, 63 per cent adequate, 25 per cent short and 11 per cent very short.
Rain and wind caused most of this week’s crop damage. Damage due to rain has resulted in bleaching and sprouting in some cereal crops, while wind has caused some shattering losses in swathed canola and rice crops.
Farmers are now busy combining, hauling bales and completing fall weed control operations.