Hard Spring Wheat and Durum Crop Tour
Summary by Ben Handcock
The tour was conducted July 27-29 in North Dakota plus parts of South Dakota and Minnesota. (Tour Map) Thirty-six people participated.
The spring wheat fields surveyed (305) averaged 38.8 bushels per acre. The durum fields (27) averaged 29.8 bushels per acre. The spring wheat potential is about 1.2 bushels above last year and 4.5 bushels above the tour 5-year average. The durum potential is about 1.2 bushels above last year and 3.4 bushels above the tour 5-year average (Tour results).
The average for all spring and durum fields was 38 bushels compared to the 5-year tour average of 32.6.
Day one covered the south half of the state with yields ranging from a high of 66 bushels per acre in the valley to a low of 9.6 bushels in the far west.
Day two covered the northwest and north central parts of the state with a high yield of 57 bushels per acre and a low of 8.6 bushels per acre.
Day three covered the northeast and east central parts of the state with a high yield of 96.8 bushels per acre and a low of 21.6 bushels per acre.
I believe the quality of this crop will be very good. I suspect producers are fertilizing for yields of this caliber so protein should be in the normal range. The tour scouts saw minimal scab in the more mature wheat, which is a real plus for everybody in the industry.
There is quite a bit of later planted wheat this year. Tour participants have no way of knowing what the disease pressure on this part of the crop might be but it looks good right now.
The northern tier of counties obviously has significant acres not planted due to rain and snow at planting time, so total acres of production will be lower than anticipated earlier.
There are some areas where lodging is occurring. This will make for a slower, more difficult harvest for those affected.
I believe the newer varieties, like Alsen, have had a huge impact on the amount of scab being observed in the crop. If you do see scab, it is usually only one spikelet on the head instead of the entire head.
Our results should not be viewed as being official. The North Dakota Agricultural Statistics Service will be giving updates of the official data.