Crops across Alberta are either ahead of their regular development stage or stagnated due to the hot weather, the July 13 provincial crop report says. The heat has been prolonged and record breaking across the province, with limited precipitation.
“This deteriorated crop growing conditions across the province and reduced yield potential. Crops and forages in most areas are in need of immediate moisture and cooler temperatures to make any recovery,” the report says.
Crop conditions have dropped 32 per cent and are now rated at 37 per cent good to excellent, which is below the five-year average of 74 per cent and 10-year average of 73 per cent. Crop growing conditions dropped for all regions of the province, the report notes.
Precipitation deficits are now at one in 50 year lows in some ares of the province, the report says. For most of these areas, the deficits started in July 2020 as the wet spring was replaced by a drying tree which continued through the fall and winter. It eased off in spring 2021, but has since returned.
“The lack of moisture, coupled with the effects of the intense heat have been amplified and taken its toll on soil moisture reserves.”
Lack of pasture concerns are growing with many fields turning yellow or brown with little re-growth happening, the report says. Some producers have started silaging their cereal or pulse crops in order to salvage them.