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Abundant Snow Cover Offers Protection for Winter Wheat Crops

19 December 2013
Manitoba Pork Council


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CANADA - The executive director of Winter Cereals Canada says abundant snow cover in much of Saskatchewan and Manitoba should provide the protection necessary to allow cereal crops planted last fall to survive the winter, Bruce Cochrane writes.

Figures released by Statistics Canada show the number of acres seeded to winter wheat last fall rose in Alberta and Saskatchewan but declined in Manitoba.

Jake Davidson, the executive director of Winter Cereals Canada says we have some pretty significant snow cover so the crops are relatively well protected.

Jake Davidson-Winter Cereals Canada

Right now large parts of Manitoba and Saskatchewan have got pretty significant snow cover and even the places that didn't get that much, I'm told talking to people that the stubble crop has trapped what they have.

Where I live there's not much snow on the ground but if I look across where there is stubble or something, for instance on a hay field, that has trapped a fair bit of snow so I think now that everything is covered up, I think the crop had a reasonable amount of time to vernalize in the fall so if nothing really strange happens like a January thaw like we had a few years ago or something like that, we should do all right.

It's a matter now of waiting until spring.

The more snow the better at this point to cover the crop and spring moisture but once it's in the ground, vernalized and sleeping as long as we can keep it from getting frosted right off with snow blowing off the ground and the wind blowing cold air right over top of the soil and really freezing that top few inches like a rock we should be all right.

It's Mother nature from here on in.

Mr Davidson says, despite the reduced number of winter wheat acres planted in Manitoba, if the crop comes through the winter in good shape, the number of harvested acres could actually be higher in Manitoba.

TheCropSite News Desk



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