Harvest challenged by mother nature

By Nigel Maxwell
September 13, 2018 - 5:00pm

Over half of this year's provincial crop is now in the bin according to the Ministry of Agriculture's weekly crop report, but cool, wet conditions in the days ahead may hamper some operations.

Environment Canada has forecasted rain Friday through Monday for central Saskatchewan, with highs around 10 Celsius. Darren Ukrainetz farms in the Tisdale area and said they need a month of really nice weather.

"We haven't had a lot of moisture but it's just been often enough to keep a lot of guys out of the field," he said.

According to this week's crop report, 58 per cent of the provincial crop is now in the bin. Harvest is most advanced in the southwest region at 82 per cent. The northeast region has 27 per cent combined. Ukrainetz said despite the challenges with mother nature, his yields remain better than average.

"My barley was a good crop and I've heard some of the canola taken off has been a very good yield," he said.

Harvest remains least advanced in the northwest region, with just 16 per cent in the bin. Doug Oleksyn, who farms in the Shellbook area, said he considers himself to be among the lucky ones, having been able to get his peas and barley off the field, and a little bit of high bred rye, oats and wheat.

"We were pretty fortunate. We had like 95 per cent of our stuff swathed days prior to the frost but you are hearing lots of fellows that did not have a lot swathed," he said.

Oleksyn said he did notice some change in his canola as a result of the recent frost, and protein levels in the wheat have not been as high this year as they have been in past years.

"Moisture conditions are just spotty. North of the municipality they'll be dealing with later stuff because of hail. We're fortunate as the hail we had did very little damage," he said.

Across the province, topsoil moisture conditions on cropland are rated as 25 per cent adequate, 40 per cent short and 35 per cent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as 20 per cent adequate, 32 per cent short and 48 per cent very short.


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Snowy, wet conditions to stick around, weather hampering harvest

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