Crop progress report 09/10: Washington Remained Mostly Dry and Smoky

There were 6.7 days suitable for field work last week. Pasture and range conditions were reported at 40 percent very poor, 23 percent poor, 27 percent fair and 10 percent good. A low temperature of 45 degrees F was reported in the northeast region, while a high temperature of 103 degrees was reported in the southeast region. Statewide differentials ranged from 5 to 13 degrees above normal.

In the western region, dry conditions were alleviated slightly by some rain over the week. Producers with irrigation continued to do well, while those crops without were showing stress due to dry conditions. Corn growth was stunted, while pasture operations switched over to stored feed earlier than expected. Plums, pears and apples were ripening. Meanwhile, cranberry operations were concerned about the dry conditions. Barley and hay harvests continued, while potato operations waited for their crops to fully mature before harvest.

In the central region, the fires made it difficult for some to operate safely due to the heavy smoke, with some places shut down due to poor air conditions. Winter wheat harvest was nearly completed in the whole region, showing good growth, while spring wheat did not. Pastures were exceedingly dried out, with many producers using supplemental feed. Early apple harvest began. Pear production appeared to be down. Cereal grain harvest was nearly finished, while some operations conducted fourth cuttings of alfalfa. Fall work for next year’s winter wheat was underway. Rain was especially needed to alleviate dry conditions and to reduce fire risks. Hop vine harvest was also underway along with cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, sweet corn, melons, and squashes.

In the eastern region, there was little to no rain, increasing fire risks. Overall, fires impacted many areas for the week, dropping air quality and reducing the time suitable for field work.

Washington crop progress:

Spring wheat harvested:
93% this week
88% last week
95% last year
96% 5-year average

Winter wheat planted:
165% this week
5% last week
30% last year
30% 5-year average

Barley harvested:
89% this week
82% last week
98% last year
97% 5-year average

Oats harvested:
89% this week
72% last week
95% last year
NA 5-year average

Alfalfa hay 3rd cutting:
82% this week
78% last week
99% last year
86% 5-year average

Alfalfa hay 4th cutting:
27% this week
24% last week
68% last year
30% 5-year average

Alfalfa hay 5th cutting:
2% this week
NA last week
19% last year
NA 5-year average