The Woodward News

March 15, 2013

Recent rain improves crop conditions

Charise Smith
Woodward News

Woodward, Okla. — The recent rainfall has had a positive impact on crop conditions across Oklahoma.

According to the Oklahoma Crop Weather report issued by the USDA-NASS Oklahoma Field Office, the rainfall topped 2 inches in some areas and the average for the state was about .74 of an inch. Thanks to the rain and snow from the past few weeks, the conditions for the wheat and canola crops are better.

USDA-NASS Oklahoma Director Wilbert Hundl Jr. said, “According to the Crop Progress Report's first report last week, wheat is 21 percent jointing.”

This total is behind 16 points from last years but is ahead four points for the 5-year total. About 59 percent of the wheat crop is rated in the poor to fair range.

Also improving are the rye, oats, and canola crops. The rye and oat crops were rated mostly good to fair. Rye was six points ahead of normal progress; however, jointing was 27 percent complete, significantly behind from this time last year. Oat planting continued with the spring oats and was 72 percent complete by the end of the week, Hundl said.

For row crops very little progress was made. Row crop seedbed preparation only made a little progress this past week and is behind normal for several crops. Corn seedbed preparation is about 28 percent complete and sorghum seedbed preparation was 28 percent complete by Sunday. Ten percent complete by week's end was soybean, while preparation for cotton was 25 percent complete.

Conditions for pasture and range are rated poor to very poor, Hundl said. Livestock producers are still concerned with the limited availability of grasses though livestock conditions were still rated mostly good to fair and producers continue to supplement and feed hay to the herds.

The topsoil moisture has increased 14 percent this week with 2 percent surplus. There is 88 percent subsoil moisture. Hundl says the subsoil moisture is at a “critical state.”

USDA is currently working on March's Planting Intention Survey which is the first indication for the spring crop planting acreage. The survey is supposed to be released March 28, at 11 a.m. The entire report can be viewed online at www.nass.usda.gov/ok under “Recent Reports.” For more information on NASS surveys and reports call the USDA-NASS Oklahoma Field Office at 800-525-9226