Oklahoma Canola Harvest Reaches Halfway PointFri, 21 Jun 2013 18:06:27 CDT
Oklahoma canola producers are busily harvesting the 2013 crop and Gene Neuens of P-COM says harvest is about halfway done. He spoke recently with Radio Oklahoma Network's Ron Hays and will appear with Ron on "In the Field" Saturday morning about 6:40 a.m. on News 9. (You can hear their full conversation by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.)
He says producers south of I-40 are mostly finished with farmers near Kingfisher, Enid, and Bison getting into full swing. He said most of the crop in those areas has been swathed and farmers are now picking it up.
Neuens said that swathing the crop seems to have become the preferred method of harvest across the state.
"They can get it laid down and get it picked up before wheat harvest really starts and get it out of the way. They know they can do it. We had some guys spray this year, but they ended up right in the middle of harvest. Spray it with a dessicant then you end up right in the middle of wheat harvest trying to pick it up."
Texas farmers are now beginning to get add canola to their rotation and, Neuen said, yields look promising in the area just south of the Red River east of I-35. He said estimates are that some fields will produce 50 bushels per acre.
South of I-40 on this side of the Red River, producers had to contend with drought, freeze damage, and severe storms. Still, Neuens said, producers were able to salvage some of their crop.
"We saw them harvest those fields, the canola fields, where they didn't do the wheat fields. Yields weren't great, but they did pull something off of them. Some of the fields were insuranced out. But generally we saw a stand of canola that they could harvest. The freeze didn't really hurt it that bad. It blew for about three weeks. Every time it hailed we lost a little bit of the pod set off of it. But, other than that, it still came up pretty good. They were pretty happy with it."
Late freezes lengthened the crop's growing season by a week to ten days, Neuen said, and for farmers north of I-40 that lengthened season is putting canola harvest smack dab in the middle of wheat harvest.
Neuens said that oil yields were lower on the crop south of I-40 due to the weather situation, but they've seen a better yield from fields north of I-40. In terms of raw yields he said farmers are seeing 45-50 bushels to the acre and that they are pleased with that given the conditions this year.
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