The first weekly Crop Progress report for the 2013 crop year found cold wet weather across the state. Cold ground temperatures and above average precipitation in March has delayed planting progress. There were 1.6 days suitable for fieldwork. Topsoil moisture supply was 2 percent very short, 9 percent short, 69 percent adequate, and 20 percent surplus. Topsoil moisture in the northwest district was rated 49 percent short to very short. Subsoil moisture supply was 14 percent very short, 27 percent short, 56 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus. Spring tillage was 15 percent, compared to 49 percent last year, and the 5 year average (normal) of 24 percent. Winter wheat condition was rated 2 percent poor, 29 percent fair, 61 percent good, and 8 percent excellent.
For the week ending of March 31, 2013, below normal temperatures limited fieldwork activities with producers awaiting warmer conditions. Topsoil moisture supplies were rated 37 percent very short, 43 short, 20 adequate, and 0 surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were rated 60 percent very short, 36 short, 4 adequate, and 0 surplus. Wheat conditions rated 14 percent very poor, 35 poor, 41 fair, 10 good, and 0 excellent.
For the week ending March 31, 2013, below normal temperatures limited snowmelt, with many areas of the state still experiencing average to above-average snow depths. Even though the additional precipitation was welcomed by producers in drought stricken areas, there is continued concern with the potential of spring flooding. With the continued snow cover in many areas, there were no days suitable for fieldwork again this week. Reports indicated that, on average, producers intended to begin fieldwork by April 23. The 2013 anticipated start date is well behind last year’s early starting date of April 3. Topsoil moisture supplies were rated 8 percent very short, 22 percent short, 62 percent adequate, and 8 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were rated 12 percent very short, 33 percent short, 51 percent adequate, and 4 percent surplus.
For the week ending March 31, 2013, below normal temperatures limited snowmelt and kept soil temperatures at or below freezing in many areas. Topsoil moisture supplies were rated 34 percent very short, 38 percent short, 23 percent adequate, and 5 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were rated 52 percent very short, 35 percent short, 11 percent adequate, and 2 percent surplus. South Dakota winter wheat condition was rated 20 percent very poor, 56 percent poor, 22 percent fair, 2 percent good, and 0 percent excellent. Twenty-six percent of the winter wheat acreage was reported lost to winter kill. Only one percent of spring wheat has been seeded, compared to 21 percent last year and 5 percent for the five-year average.