PF CCI: Another Significant Dip for HRW Wheat

By: Meghan Pedersen

May  19,  2014

When USDA's weekly crop condition ratings are plugged into Pro Farmer's weighted (by production) Crop Condition Index (CCI; 0 to 500 point scale, with 500 representing perfect), the HRW wheat crop dropped another six points to 253, with Kansas again leading the decline. The crop remains rated roughly six points ahead of year-ago. The SRW wheat crop rating was little changed this week, holding at roughly 359 points.

Pro Farmer Crop Condition Index
HRW Wheat
Kansas *(38.58%)
87.95 90.65
Oklahoma (13.10%)
23.31 24.36
Texas (8.35%)
17.53 17.44
Colorado (7.77%)
20.82 21.13
Nebraska (6.26%)
19.23 20.42
S. Dakota (6.08%)
21.76 22.06
Montana (10.15%)
37.95 37.54
HRW total
253.17 258.78

* denotes percentage of total national HRW crop production.

(Palmer Drought Index below text.)

Following are details from USDA's National Ag Statistics Service (NASS) state crop and weather reports:

Kansas: For the week ending May 18, 2014, cool temperatures slowed crop development and frost warnings and freezing temperatures kept many farmers from putting seed in the ground, according to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). Concerns of possible freeze damage to corn and wheat were common across the eastern third of the state.

Temperatures averaged 6 to 12 degrees below normal across most of Kansas and dipped below 30 degrees in many areas. Spotty rains in central and eastern Kansas helped relieve drought pressure, but dry patterns in western Kansas continued. With pasture grasses shortened by drought, some producers were turning cattle out onto failed wheat. There were 5.7 days suitable for fieldwork last week. Topsoil moisture rated 33% very short, 40% short, 27% adequate and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies rated 37% very short, 40% short, 23% adequate and 0% surplus.

Winter wheat condition rated 26% very poor, 33% poor, 29% fair, 11% good and 1% excellent. Winter wheat jointed was 97%, ahead of 90% last year but equal to the five-year average. Winter wheat headed was 71%, well ahead of 36% last year but near 70% average.

Texas: Thunderstorms moved across the eastern half of Texas last week, providing much - needed rainfall to many areas. Four to six inches were reported in several locations for the week. Meanwhile, dry and windy conditions dominated much of west Texas and the Panhandle with many areas receiving little or no precipitation.

Winter wheat and oats progressed across the state, however the dry land small grain crop condition declined across the Plains due to hot, dry, windy conditions. Many producers were grazing small grain fields or cutting them for hay. Irrigation was active where available. In much of South Texas, small grain condition was good and harvest activities had begun 

Oklahoma: Moderate to heavy rainfall in the last week helped stop the expansion of the drought eastward across Oklahoma. However, little moisture was received in the areas that needed it most. Seven of the nine districts received less than an inch of rain on average, ranging from 0.01 of an inch in the Panhandle to 0.93 in the South Central District. The remaining two districts, the East Central and the Southeast, received 1.87 and 2.05 inches on average, respectively. Fifty percent of the state is still rated in an extreme to exceptional drought. For the period of March 1st through May 18, the Panhandle and North Central Districts have recorded the driest season since 1956.

Wheat fields in severe drought areas continued to be disastered out, baled for hay or otherwise abandoned. Temperatures for the week ranged from a low of 30 degrees at Kenton on Wednesday, May 14 to a high of 91 degrees at Grandfield on Friday, May 16. There were 6.2 days suitable for field work.

Condition of the winter wheat in Oklahoma continued to deteriorate, with 78% rated in poor to very poor condition. Wheat jointing was virtually complete by week's end while wheat headed reached 96 percent complete. Fifty-seven percent of oats were rated poor to very poor.

Nebraska: For the week ending May 18, 2014, precipitation across much of the western half the state improved topsoil moisture supplies, according to the USDA's NASS. However, southwest Nebraska again received only limited amounts of rainfall and remained in severe to extreme drought. Statewide, temperatures averaged 9 to 12 degrees below normal. Freezing temperatures were reported on multiple nights. Producers were assessing the impact on crops and evaluating if replanting was necessary.

Producers affected by the previous week's storms continued clearing debris and working on damaged irrigation equipment. Western producers were moving cattle to summer pastures. The number of days considered suitable for fieldwork was 4.5. Topsoil moisture supplies rated 12% very short, 24 short, 61 adequate, and 3 surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies rated 16% very short, 33% short, 50% adequate, and 1% surplus.

Winter wheat condition rated 8% very poor, 20% poor, 32% fair, 37% good and 3% excellent. Winter wheat jointed was 71%, ahead of 57% last year but behind the five-year average of 76%. Winter wheat headed was 11%, ahead of 1% last year, but behind 17% average.


Pro Farmer Crop Condition Index
SRW Wheat
Missouri *(8.97%)
31.12 30.85
Illinois (9.91%)
36.46 36.66
31.59 31.15
Arkansas (6.45%)
24.19 24.26
Indiana (5.34%)
20.19 20.13
North Carolina (9.48%)
35.91 36.20
Michigan (9.50%)
30.60 30.50
SRW total
359.41 358.88

* denotes percentage of national SRW crop production.

Following are details from NASS's state-by-state crop and weather reports:

Illinois: There were 5.0 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending May 11 allowing producers to make good progress planting. Producers spent long days in the field making up for time lost due to the previous week's wet conditions. The southern districts received a few scattered showers and averaged over an inch of rain, but conditions were drier than average in the northern part of the state.

Statewide temperatures averaged 67.2 degrees, 6.6 degrees above normal. Statewide precipitation averaged 0.85 inches, 0.13 inches below normal. Topsoil moisture was rated at 11% short, 75% adequate, and 14% surplus. Subsoil moisture was rated at 4% very short, 24% short, 64% adequate, and 8% surplus.

Winter wheat headed reached 16%, well behind the five-year average of 44%. Winter wheat condition was rated at 2% very poor, 6% poor, 29% fair, 46% good, and 17% excellent.

Ohio: There were 1.3 days suitable for fieldwork in Ohio during the week ending May 18, according to the USDA, NASS, Great Lakes Region. Precipitation in areas around the state for the week ranged between 0.81 inches and 4.37 inches, with a state average of 2.26 inches. Average temperatures in areas around the state ranged from 57 degrees to 66 degrees, with a state average of 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

There was a significant amount of rain throughout the state this week, which, along with cool temperatures, kept growers out of their fields for much of the week. Storms brought hail to several areas, though there was only one report of damage to crops. There were some reports of ponding in fields.

Winter wheat condition stayed largely the same as the previous week, but has been slow to reach the headed stage with the late spring.

Michigan: There were 1.4 days suitable for fieldwork in Michigan during the week ending May 18, according to the Great Lakes Regional office of the NASS. Cold and rainy weather conditions deterred progress in row crop plantings this week. Flooded fields halted fieldwork in most parts of the state, and muddy feed lots have made feeding cattle challenging. Pasture and hay conditions are slowly improving. Field activities for the week included harvesting corn from last fall, hauling manure, applying fertilizer, planting row crops, and preparing equipment.