Some Central Alberta farmers have reported harvest as complete, according to the provincial government’s latest crop report.
“While most areas are reporting continued harvest progress, some areas have reported harvest as complete,” states the Alberta Crop Report release on Sept. 29, featuring conditions as of Sept. 26.
In the central region, 76.8 per cent of major crops have been harvested. This is about the five-year average of 63.4 per cent and the 10-year average of 57.4 per cent. Meanwhile, 79.3 per cent of major crops have been harvested throughout the province, which is a 14 per cent increase from the previous report.
The harvest of spring cereals is reported as nearing completion with reports indicating spring wheat at 89 per cent, barley at 91 per cent and oats at 73 per cent.
Reports suggest that cooler evening temperatures may be slowing canola maturation in some areas, but canola harvest advanced 23 per cent this week to 62 per cent harvested. An additional 23 per cent of the provincial canola crop is reported as drying in the swath.
While the seasonal trend toward cooler and drier weather is assisting harvest, it has also continued to impact soil moisture reserves over the last week, with an overall decrease of three per cent in the provincial good-to-excellent surface moisture ratings and a two per cent decrease in the provincial sub-surface soil moisture ratings when compared to the last report.
The percentage of surface soil moisture rated good-to-excellent (sub-surface in brackets) for the province this week is 30 per cent (31 per cent). Regional good-to-excellent surface soil moisture ratings this week are six per cent (seven per cent) in the South, 18 per cent (19 per cent) for Central, 47 per cent (45 per cent) for the North East, 71 per cent (73 per cent) for the North West and 62 per cent (63 per cent) for the Peace.
The seasonal shift to cooler and drier weather continues to impact pasture growth as most regions reported decreased percentages of pasture rated as good-to-excellent compared to last week, with the Peace region being the notable exception.
The regional percentage of pasture rated as good-to-excellent (change from last week in brackets) is 19 per cent (down one per cent) for the province. Regional reporting of good-to-excellent pasture is at five per cent (down one per cent) for the South, 16 per cent (down less than one per cent) for Central, 29 per cent (down three per cent) for the North East, 37 per cent (down one per cent) for the North West and 52 per cent (up one per cent) for the Peace.