Crop progress report 0804: Folks across Washington said ‘it’s a hot one’ last week


There were 7.0 days suitable for fieldwork in Washington last week, up from 6.7 days suitable the previous week.

In Clallam and Jefferson counties, hot temperatures and declining soil moisture pushed crops towards declining condition. Shallow-rooted crops and pastures showed the most stress. Corn and potato crops progressed, while most berry crops were harvested and farmers were harvesting grain. In San Juan County, an overnight rain temporarily replenished topsoil moisture. Pastures experienced little regrowth and a decline in condition. Berry harvest slowed down with the exception of blueberries. Early apples were a week out from harvest. Irrigation pond water levels dropped as CSA farmers required water. Farms that planted barley late were troubled by a lack of growth due to the drought conditions.

Skagit and Snohomish counties had unexpected rain that helped corn growers, but foiled the plans of producers with cut hay that had yet to be baled. Berry and seed producers were not helped by the rain. Pickling cucumbers were finally ready to harvest in Snohomish County.

In Chelan and Douglas counties, temperatures warmed up, soft fruit harvest continued, early apple harvest began, and winter wheat harvest was in full swing. Wildfires in Yakima County were put out or at least corralled last week, and air quality improved dramatically. No crop damage was reported. Raspberry harvest slowed down due to heat. Peaches and blueberries were harvested, and pears sized up. Apple growers sprayed protectants and laid ground fabrics to help their apples color. Vegetable stands were stocked with green beans, sweet corn, melons, peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers and summer squash. Vineyards colored and filled up.

Heat dominated the landscape across southeast Washington last week, and winter wheat harvest happened across the region. Yields were average to good in Columbia, Walla Walla and Whitman counties.

Washington crop conditions:

Winter wheat:
1% very poor
3% poor
25% fair
63% good
8% excellent

Spring wheat:
1% very poor
2% poor
37% fair
53% good
7% excellent

1% very poor
1% poor
28% fair
66% good
4% excellent

0% very poor
1% poor
36% fair
62% good
1% excellent

Washington crop progress:

Spring wheat harvested:
10% this week
2% last week
15% last year
29% 5-year average

Winter wheat harvested:
35% this week
19% last week
46% last year
58% 5-year average

Barley harvested:
9% this week
1% last week
13% last year
24% 5-year average

Oats headed:
95% this week
89% last week
98% last year
NA 5-year average

Oats harvested:
10% this week
0% last week
6% last year
NA 5-year average

Dry peas harvested:
56% this week
45% last week
59% last year
61% 5-year average

Alfalfa hay 2nd cutting:
99% this week
93% last week
99% last year
89% 5-year average

Alfalfa hay 3rd cutting:
45% this week
27% last week
60% last year
NA 5-year average