Ag stats: Colorado crop progress and condition report – week ending May 16, 2021

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Published Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Counties in eastern districts continued to receive good moisture last week while western counties remained extremely dry, according to the Mountain Region Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA.

In northeastern and east central counties, planting delays continued in areas due to wet conditions. Cool temperatures and overcast weather delayed progress and emergence. Isolated severe weather and damaging hail was also reported. Winter wheat benefited from received moisture, but county reports noted crop loss in some cases where prior poor emergence was not recoverable. Livestock producers were busy turning stock out to summer pasture, but some were still waiting for native grass growth to pick up.

2021-05-16_map_drought_change_between_april_13_and_may_11_2021_-_ndmc.png

MAP Drought change between April 13 and May 11, 2021 - NDMC
Drought change between April 13 and May 11, 2021 - NDMC

In southwestern counties, exceptional drought conditions persisted. County reports noted extremely limited availability of irrigation water with early shut-offs reported. Limited irrigation is expected to adversely impact crops in the district, notably alfalfa hay.

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MAP Colorado Drought Conditions - May 11, 2021 - National Drought Mitigation Center
Colorado Drought Conditions - May 11, 2021 - National Drought Mitigation Center

In the San Luis Valley, barley planting was virtually complete and potato planting continued to advance quickly. County reports noted growth and emergence picked up for crops and native grass. Feed stocks were notably short.

In southeastern counties, good moisture was received in areas, improving crop and pasture conditions. Spring planting continued and producers were preparing to cut alfalfa. A county report noted producers were still providing supplemental feed to livestock.

As of May 14, 2021, snowpack in Colorado was 70 percent measured as percent of median snowfall. The Southwest and San Luis Valley were 34 and 39 percent, respectively.

Stored feed supplies were rated 22 percent very short, 26 percent short, and 52 percent adequate.

Sheep death loss was 87 percent average and 13 percent light.

Cattle death loss was 70 percent average and 30 percent light.

CROP AND LIVESTOCK PROGRESS

Commodity

Current week

Previous week

Previous year

5-year average

 

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

Alfalfa hay 

       

1st cutting harvested 

-- 

NA 

Barley 

       

Planted 

94 

91 

99 

95 

Emerged 

81 

68 

90 

82 

Corn 

       

Planted 

53 

41 

75 

61 

Emerged 

10 

27 

18 

Onions 

       

Planted 

81 

59 

63 

NA 

Potatoes inside San Luis Valley 

     

Planted 

83 

62 

86 

73 

Potatoes outside San Luis Valley 

     

Planted 

79 

54 

75 

79 

Emerged 

13 

20 

30 

Proso millet 

       

Planted 

15 

NA 

Sorghum 

       

Planted 

-- 

20 

Sugarbeets 

       

Planted 

87 

56 

70 

88 

Emerged 

16 

27 

49 

Sunflowers 

       

Planted 

NA 

18 

Winter wheat 

       

Jointed 

85 

71 

75 

83 

Headed 

-- 

20 

21 

DAYS SUITABLE FOR FIELDWORK AND SOIL MOISTURE CONDITION

 

Current week

Previous week

Previous year

5-year average

Days suitable for fieldwork 

5.0 

5.4 

6.0 

5.3 

Topsoil moisture 

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

Very short 

14 

22 

Short 

29 

29 

37 

17 

Adequate 

62 

54 

40 

69 

Surplus. 

Subsoil moisture 

       

Very short 

22 

30 

22 

Short 

34 

34 

29 

17 

Adequate 

44 

36 

48 

72 

Surplus. 

-- 

-- 

CROP, LIVESTOCK, PASTURE AND RANGE CONDITION

Commodity

Current week

Previous week

Previous year

5-year average

 

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

(percent)

Alfalfa hay 

       

Very poor 

-- 

Poor 

10 

Fair 

24 

23 

25 

20 

Good 

52 

55 

51 

58 

Excellent 

18 

17 

12 

Barley 

       

Very poor 

-- 

-- 

Poor 

Fair 

32 

30 

19 

16 

Good 

44 

49 

51 

57 

Excellent 

17 

14 

29 

26 

Pasture and range 

       

Very poor 

13 

23 

19 

Poor 

27 

26 

13 

10 

Fair 

50 

43 

30 

26 

Good 

38 

50 

Excellent 

-- 

-- 

Winter wheat 

       

Very poor 

10 

12 

22 

Poor 

20 

18 

22 

12 

Fair 

38 

42 

28 

29 

Good 

29 

25 

26 

44 

Excellent 

Livestock 

       

Very poor 

-- 

-- 

Poor 

Fair 

23 

26 

20 

17 

Good 

59 

55 

66 

69 

Excellent 

10 

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