Crop progress report for January 2018


January was warmer than usual for Washington state. Most of the state received excessive rain while only a few regions received snow, most of which were at higher altitudes. Some regions in the west reported up to 11.10 inches of rain, with most of the west reporting at least an extra inch of rain than usual. Most of the remaining parts of the state received excess rain as well, with some parts in the east reporting more than 2 inches of extra precipitation than expected. The excess rain and mild temperatures brought a large amount of standing water, causing excessive pooling and erosion. Some areas were at risk for landslides.

While there were some concerns the warmer and wetter than usual conditions would increase germination, most operations welcomed the conditions for providing better working and growing conditions. Crops remained dormant in the cool, wet conditions. Some berry and orchard operations were pruned. Livestock operations entered the calving season. Mortality rates for newborn livestock were lower than last year. Winter wheat began to emerge in some areas. While there was limited snow cover, winter wheat and other crops looked good. Overall, the state experienced a warmer and wetter winter, with very few instances of freezing and extreme cold.