Canada Markets

Manitoba Challenges Remain Ongoing for Seeding Crops

Cliff Jamieson
By  Cliff Jamieson , Canadian Grains Analyst
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More favorable conditions allowed Manitoba producers to jump from 10% of the province's crop seeded to 40% during the week ending May 31, although this pace remains well behind the 91% seeded as of this week last year and the five-year average of 92%. (DTN graphic by Cliff Jamieson)

DTN weather analysis pointed for a window of opportunity for producers across the northern states and eastern Prairies last week, which Manitoba producers jumped on, with progress jumping from 10% complete to 40% complete. This jump is not unheard of, with 32% of the crop seeded from the second to the third week of May in 2021, although the progress made during the past week involved facing many challenges, including wet roads and fields and involved long hours. The province reports roughly 4 million acres are planted, while the 2021 Statistics Canada Census of Agriculture points to 11.6 million acres of cropland in the province.

Since April 1, rainfall across the province ranges from 90 millimeters to 130 mm in an area of the Northwest Region, while an area surrounding Winnipeg has seen from 250 mm to 330 mm. A Twitter post from Rob's Obs, a retired Environment Canada meteorologist shows March 1-May 31 precipitation for Winnipeg at 299.2 mm (11.8 inches), which is 176.2 mm or 143% above average and the second-highest precipitation for the city seen in available records going back to 1872, or 150 years.

The Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation recently announced an extension to the planting dates for soybeans, now June 4 for Area 2 and Area 3 in the province and June 8 for Area 1, deadlines required in order to obtain full crop insurance coverage. Coverage at reduced rates is available for crops planted until June 13 in Area 1 and June 9 for Area 2/3.

Several crops have seen the May 30 deadline for planting pass by, with coverage at reduced rates available for crops planted during the Extended Seeding Period. An example is grain corn, with a deadline for Areas 2-4 in the province of May 30 now moved to June 4. This may remain a challenge for areas receiving heavy rains during the weekend with fields too wet to plant.

The seven-day precipitation map currently looks more favorable for the eastern Prairies, with only a chance of isolated showers for late in the week. Temperatures remain low and unfavorable for crop development, with DTN's Five-Day Highs Compare to Normal showing temperatures across the province's crop area ranging from 4 degrees Celsius to 9 degrees C below normal.

Focus going forward will be split between the ability to get on the land and the potential for the seeded crop. Manitoba Agriculture posts a chart of 2010-2019 Seeding Date vs. Average Yield Response. Yield potential moves lower with later seeding, while this chart would show planting in the first week of June would lead to canola that averaged approximately 92% of average yield to dry peas at approximately 65% of average, with all other crops falling within this range. Planting in the second week of June shows soybeans achieving roughly 88% of average yield while the dry pea potential falls to 45%, with all other crops falling within this range.

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