Saskatchewan Agriculture's weekly Crop Report as of July 15 rates the province's crop at poor to good overall, with improving crop ratings reported while the crop remains late.
The province says that 28% of the fall cereals, 35% of the spring cereals, 46% of the oilseeds and 25% of the pulse crops are behind normal growth stages for this week. Given these ratings, this would point to the most delayed crop seen since the July 14, 2014 ratings, when 57% of the spring wheat crop was behind normal growth stages and 61% of the oilseeds were behind normal.
The overall crop has responded to the moisture received over the past month, with only 14% of the province facing poor-to-very-poor topsoil moisture conditions, consisting of 13% short and 1% very short. This is close to the lowest rating seen in any week over 2018 and 2019, with this rating reported at 11% in early July. In 2018, this combined rating of short to very short reached a low of 18% as of June 11, then showed deterioration in eight of the following nine weeks to reach 69% of the province by Aug. 13.
As seen on the attached chart, the crop condition index calculated for the five selected crops has shown improvement over the past month. All have shown a significant rebound since the June 17 ratings were released, with peas, lentils and spring wheat responding the most favorably on the chart to the highest crop condition index of 174, 156 and 158, respectively.
Looking at a wider list of crops, while not shown, three are reporting a decline in condition this week based on the crop condition index calculation over the recent two weeks of July. One of these is winter wheat, which has slipped 32 percentage points over the week to 66 points, which is the only crop studied that is currently rated lower than its initial CCI rating of 78 on June 3. Another is soybeans, which has slipped just 2 points over the past two weeks to a CCI of 139. The third is chickpeas, where the CCI has slipped 32 points over the past two weeks to a CCI of 123.
When comparing several crops to the July 9 ratings reported in 2018, only durum is currently showing a higher CCI, up 2 points from this time last year at a CCI of 136. Considering several other crops, the CCI for each crop as of July 15 trails the year ago (July 9) CCI. Peas and lentils may be viewed as close, down 10 points and 17 points from last year, respectively. At the same time, spring wheat is 30 points behind last year, winter wheat is 59 points behind last year and canola is 60 points behind last year.
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