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Warm, Dry Weather Pushes Spring Wheat Planting
Minnesota Ag Connection - 05/16/2018

Warm, dry conditions allowed for excellent planting progress over the last week. North Dakota producers have slightly more than half of the spring wheat crop planted, up over 30 percentage points compared to last week. At 52 percent complete, that is near the five-year average of 56 percent, but still behind last year's pace of 68 percent. Surrounding states also made good progress with planting completion rates ranging from 48 to 79 percent. The short term forecast shows warm, dry conditions for the next few days with some chances of precipitation towards the end of the week.

Emergence of the U.S. spring wheat crop is at 14 percent, behind both last year's pace and the five-year average of 36 percent. The slower emergence is mostly due to the fact that planting was delayed, and the crop just needs time to catch up. However, in some cases, moisture is needed to help along emergence. The most recent drought monitor shows that the majority of North Dakota is rated as being abnormally dry to severe drought. Topsoil and subsoil moisture conditions have not changed much and about half of the soil is rated as being short to very short on moisture.

Planting of the durum crop remains slower than normal. About 27 percent of the North Dakota durum has been planted, behind last year's pace of 48 percent, and the five-year average of 36 percent. Emergence is at two percent. Conditions remain dry in much of the North Dakota durum region. In Montana, 39 percent of the durum has been planted compared to 53 percent on average, and one percent has emerged.

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