Crop progress report 03/22: Winter wheat looks good, but moisture needed


Statewide temperatures in Washington for the month of March were normal to above normal.

In western Washington, there was heavy rainfall over the last couple of weeks. Some fields had significant amounts of standing water. Drier upland soils began to warm as pasture regrowth started. Field plantings for barley were rough due to wet conditions throughout the area. In Skagit County, tulips were behind due to flooded fields and labor strikes. In Chelan County, winter wheat made it through the winter in good shape.

In central Washington, little rainfall was received, but all orchard trees were in dormancy. Yakima County reported apricots were in full bloom. Peaches were showing pink buds, while cherries were showing white buds. Apple trees were in full swing between green tip and half inch green. Pear tree buds were swelling due to producers applying kaolin clay and oils to their trees to combat sucking insects like pear psylla and aphids. In late March, vegetable growers prepared and tilled their fields.

In east central Washington, spring was quickly approaching, and farmers were in fields across the county. Overall, conditions throughout the county remained dry, and above average precipitation was needed to help the growing season.

In southeast Washington, seeding had started, but the area still experienced drought conditions. In Garfield County, spring wheat and dry peas were planted in the dry areas of the county. Winter wheat looked good, but still needed additional moisture.