Potato growers in Manitoba have been able to get out in the fields with 30 per cent of the crop planted, the May 4 crop report from Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development says. Some growers are waiting for warmer soil temperatures before starting planting it notes.
The report notes weather was good for field work over the last week despite the dry topsoil conditions. Daytime temperatures have been near normal with freezing temperatures overnight. There were some strong winds on Friday, April 30 causing soil drifting. Temperatures climbed to 24 C on Saturday, May 1 with a light rain happening later that day.
“Field access is very good with dryer topsoil conditions prevailing until the rain on Sunday. Field operations will be delayed a few days, but should continue with a return to forecasted sunny conditions for most of the week,” the report says.
Soil temperatures at seeding depth currently ranges between 5 to 8 C. Little to no spring runoff had led to dugouts and groundwater not being recharged, with water reserves now lower than usual, the report notes.