Despite the delayed harvest of 2014, Manitoba producers did seed a limited acreage of winter wheat. It is estimated seeded acres are at or below 200,000, which is down from what was seeded in Fall 2013 and 2012 (see Table 1).
Table 1: Historical Acres of Winter Wheat Seeded in Manitoba
Fall Establishment. The good news is much of that seeding occurred under “optimal” conditions – before or at recommended seeding dates, into fields with standing stubble, and into good soil moisture. The winter wheat crop emerged quickly and uniformly, reaching the recommended stage of 3 leaf to 1 tiller prior to snow fall.
The stage of crop development in the fall is important as it not only influences winter survival, but it can also impact yield potential, crop competiveness and maturity. However, winter survival is also influenced by fall management practices, including variety selection, seeding date and depth, fertilizer placement and stubble conditions.
Take Notes Now & Over the Winter. Manitoba producers have done their part to ensure their crop reaches maximum winter hardiness. Now is where we hope for good snow cover and moderate winter temperatures so the 2014/15 winter wheat crop can overwinter and emerge in spring in excellent condition! To help you with spring assessment of winter survival and crop life, record the following over the winter:
- crop’s condition such as crop stage and stand prior to snow cover. Also note well acclimated plants will hold leaves close to the ground.
- winter stresses such as cold snaps, when they occurred and their duration,
- length and timing of snow cover. For winter survival, February/March snow cover is the best.
Submitted by: Pam de Rocquigny, Provincial Cereal Crops Specialist, MAFRD
To learn more on potential impacts of fall growth stages on winter wheat production factors, please visit MAFRD’s website at: http://www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/crops/production/what-happens-if-my-winter-wheat-did-not-emerge-.html