Oklahoma's winter wheat planting up 5 percentage points week-over-week to 95% on Nov. 6, USDA says; 52% of sorghum crop harvested, 5 points behind average

OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma , November 8, 2011 (press release) – Additional rainfall last week kept crop progress for wheat, rye, oats and canola on track. Although the state continued experiencing severe drought conditions, the recent rains have reduced the percent of the state under exceptional drought conditions. The November 1 U.S. Drought Monitor reported 42 percent of the state remaining under exceptional drought conditions, down from 55 percent reported on October 25th and 64 percent on August 2nd. Eight of the nine districts were above 50 percent of normal precipitation since September 1st, while the Southeast district was at 41 percent of normal. Topsoil moisture conditions showed 34 percent rated adequate, compared to 38 percent the previous week. Subsoil moisture conditions improved slightly with 64 percent very short, down from 70 percent the previous week. There were 6.1 days suitable for field work.

Small Grains: With most of the fall crops planted and emerged, temperatures and precipitation are in control for the 2011-2012 season. Conditions for wheat, rye, and canola continued to be rated mostly good to fair. Wheat planting reached 95 percent complete, up five points from the previous week, with 81 percent emerged. Canola emerged reached 92 percent, up six points from last year. Ninety-three percent of the rye had emerged by Sunday, three points behind the five-year average. Seedbed preparation for oat ground was 76 percent complete, unchanged from the week prior. Oat planting reached 49 percent complete by the end of the week and 38 percent had emerged, both behind normal.

Row Crops: Harvest activity increased for all crops from the week before. Sorghum, soybeans, and peanuts remained behind the five-year average and cotton harvest was on track with the five-year average. Sorghum coloring was 96 percent complete by the end of the week. Eighty-eight percent of sorghum had matured, and 52 percent was harvested by Sunday, five points behind normal. Soybeans mature reached 85 percent complete by Sunday, and 56 percent of soybeans had been harvested, four points behind normal. Ninety-five percent of peanuts had matured by week’s end, and 80 percent were dug, nine points behind the five-year average. Sixty-two percent of the peanuts had been combined by week’s end, 11 points behind the average. Cotton plants opening bolls reached 95 percent complete and 44 percent of cotton had been harvested by week’s end.

Hay: With this year’s hay season coming to an end, hay continued to be in short supply. Third cuttings of alfalfa were 72 percent complete, and 18 percent of the state had completed a fourth cutting, compared to a five-year average of 100 percent. A second cutting of other hay was 58 percent complete by Sunday, 30 points behind normal.

Pasture and Livestock: Pasture and range conditions continued to be rated poor to very poor. Winter pasture conditions continued to show improvement providing much needed relief to producers. Livestock conditions rated 46 percent in fair condition, up two points from the previous week. Prices for feeder steers less than 800 pounds averaged $141 per cwt. Prices for heifers less than 800 pounds averaged $128 per cwt.

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