Ron Sholar Says Time is Running Out on 2014 Canola CropFri, 09 May 2014 17:07:09 CDT
Not only have the drought and the April 15th freeze taken their toll on the state's wheat crop, but they have also hit the canola crop very hard.
Speaking at the winter crop tour in Lahoma Friday, Dr. Ron Sholar of the Great Plains Canola Association said producers are trying to maintain a positive attitude, but it becomes more difficult with each passing day. He spoke with Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays and you can hear their conversation by clicking on the LISTEN BAR at the bottom of this story.
"We stayed optimistic and things looked so good coming out of the winter with good stands. We lost some plants, but for the most part we looked really good. We were poised for a really good crop this year and it's been particularly painful to watch the drought just continue to take that potential away."
Sholar said that upon close inspection the canola crop seems to be holding its own and may be doing even a little better than the wheat crop at this point.
"Neither are doing very well under these conditions. I see a lot of wheat up here in the Enid area just flat out dying. It's browning out. I say it's not a good sign when you can't tell if a wheat field has been grazed out or not. That's not where you want to be here in early May or nearly mid May. But the canola is still hanging in there and we still have fields setting pods and if we could just get that rain there's still some potential there, but it's not what it was."
Recent rains missed the north central and northwest sections of the state, but there's still a little time left in which some moisture would help fill pods that have already developed on the plants. Sholar said the pods are less than half as long as normal so the yield potential is significantly lower and continues to fall.
"Every day that we don't get rain makes it a more dismal situation for us."
He said time is rapidly running out on this year's crop, but he still harbors some hope because the crop is also a good two weeks behind where it was at this time last year.
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