Relatively cool growing conditions prevailed again last week across most of western Canada. Overnight lows were cool with single digits with freezing temperatures (-10°C) reported near Maidstone, SK and Beaverlodge, AB Tuesday and Thursday mornings, respectively. The risk of an early fall frost and its impact on crop quality continues to be one of the greatest concerns. However, the cool temperatures at flowering have resulted in canola that has branched and podded well, creating the potential for average to perhaps even above average yield in some areas where moisture has been adequate. Timely rains fell in northwest and central Manitoba, eastern and northern Saskatchewan, and southwest of the Highway #2 corridor in central Alberta, and as well as in the Peace region of Alberta and BC. Much of the canola crop in these areas is coming out of flower with good pod set and the recent rains should help with seed fill. Dry pockets continue near Edmonton-Camrose-Vegreville areas and south of Unity to Kindersley, Saskatchewan and across the Alberta border to an area around Oyen. Drought stress symptoms are evident on the crops with large ground cracks obvious. In the driest areas, canola is being silaged for greenfeed or sprayed out to conserve fertilizer applied as crops continue to be written off by AFSC (provincial crop insurance). Parts of eastern and Interlake regions of Manitoba continue to battle excess moisture with a small band of showers dumping another 1 to 2 inches on an already water-logged area.
Maps of current moisture conditions in western Canada from PFRA are available at:
Additional moisture information for Alberta is available from Alberta Environment at: