Crop progress report 4/30: Winter conditions end in Eastern Washington but linger in the west


There were 5.6 days suitable for field work last week. Pasture and range conditions were reported at 0 percent very poor, 11 percent poor, 14 percent fair, 66 percent good and 9 percent excellent. A low temperature of 28 degrees F was reported in the northeast region while a high temperature of 70 degrees F was reported in the southeast region. Statewide temperature differentials ranged from 6 degrees below normal to 3 degrees above normal.

In the west, many regions still remained too wet for field equipment. First cutting of hay was ready, but without being able to get in the field, was left alone. Planting delays range from two to five weeks for most operations in the west, with only a select few on higher and drier grounds capable of planting. Orchard and fruit operations were doing well, with pears and apples blooming. Plums were coming along. Pollination may be down due to only a few available warm days for bee pollination. High tunnel growers began to plant tomatoes, melons and beans. Ranchers began to let livestock out to pasture as conditions permitted. Overall, the west was behind, but planned to make up for it at the first sign of clear, dry conditions.

In the central regions, some areas remained wet while others began to dry up due to warmer and windy conditions. Some regions began field work, while others were waiting a little longer for ideal planting temperatures, with potatoes in mind. Some fruit operations were delayed due to cold and frost danger.

In the east, windy and dry conditions allowed for field work. The eastern farmland was behind by about two weeks overall in their schedules, but their pastures and crops were in relatively good condition. There were some concerns involving snow and rust affecting the winter wheat crop due to the prolonged winter-like conditions.

Crop conditions:

WA winter wheat:
1% very poor
1% poor
15% fair
65% good
18% excellent

Crop progress:

Spring wheat planted:
49% this week
38% last week
81% last year
82% 5-year average

Spring wheat emerged:
11% this week
1% last week
54% last year
49% 5-year average

Barley planted:
29% this week
12% last week
52% last year
65% 5-year average

Barley emerged:
4% this week
1% last week
35% last year
34% 5-year average

Oats planted:
19% this week
12% last week
36% last year
N/A 5-year average

Dry peas planted:
30% this week
28% last week
65% last year
51% 5-year average