Ag Weather Forum

Sask. Crops Face More Hot, Dry Weather

By Joel Burgio , DTN Senior Ag Meteorologist
A significant portion of the southern and central crop areas of Saskatchewan is showing less than 40% of normal rainfall in the last 60 days up to July 11. (Graphic courtesy of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)

The most recent rainfall maps continue to show much of the south and central crop areas of Saskatchewan at less than 60% of the long-term normal during the 60-day period ending July 11. A significant portion of this area is showing less than 40% of normal for the same time period.

Spring wheat and canola, among other crops, are advancing through reproductive growth stages at this time and need a generous and high coverage rain event to prevent mounting crop losses from the region.

The chances for significant shower activity to occur in the driest areas of the Canadian Prairies grains and oilseed areas remains fairly limited during the next 10 days. This includes much of the area depicted on the included graphic as 40 to 60% of normal or less than 40% of normal.

The region is also expected to see episodes of fairly hot weather as well.

The first of these hot spell begins today and reaches a peak Friday. Daytime highs averaging well above normal for the area means readings of 31 to 35 Celsius are likely with a slight risk of readings 35 to 38 C as well.

Temperatures may moderate somewhat during Saturday before turning hot again Sunday or Monday. Temperatures may vary somewhat during the balance of next week, but there is likely to be additional hot or very hot days mixed in with some cooler conditions as well. As temperatures vary within the region during the period, there may be some chance for showers on the transitions, but the chance that these showers would change the situation significantly are rather low.

Longer-range charts covering the period out to 16 days or so continue to show a varying temperature pattern and some chance for a few scattered showers to occur. There is a slight chance that has you move further into the summer the higher humidity may combine with weak frontal passages to cause more rainfall. However, I do not believe we are in that situation even during the 11-to-16 day forecast period.

It appears likely that crop condition and yield potential from the driest areas of the Canadian Prairies will continue to decline during the next 10 days or more. The areas to the north and west are doing somewhat better at this time with no reason to believe the heat stress would expand to include these locations for a significant period of time. The area to the east, into Manitoba, does bear watching as this section may also see some heat and has already had a drying trend.

Joel Burgio can be reached at joel.burgio@dtn.com

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