Oklahoma

A few widely scattered showers crossed portions of the state, but most areas failed to receive rainfall again last week for the fifth week in a row, says the Oklahoma Agricultural Statistics Service Sept. 5.

The persistent dry conditions and extreme temperatures continued to diminish topsoil and subsoil moisture levels and stress crops and pastures.

All districts averaged a maximum temperature of 100 degrees or greater last week. Sunday's Sept. 3, scorching temperatures averaged a high of 105 degrees, with 11 stations reaching or exceeding 110 degrees.

Large amounts of moisture are desperately needed throughout the state.

Farmers had 6.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week.

Dry conditions and extreme heat continued to slow preparation for planting wheat, in many areas of the state. Sixty-one percent of the wheat seedbed has been prepared, slightly behind normal. Planting of fall crops most likely will be delayed in many areas, if rainfall is not received soon.

The central and northeast districts were the main areas able to plant wheat last week.

Dryland row crops remained hampered by the hot and dry weather. Corn remained in mostly good condition across the state; however, the extreme heat and lack of moisture has rapidly matured the crop significantly ahead of normal. As of Sept. 3, 70% of the crop had matured and 30% had been harvested, both well ahead of the five-year averages of 37 and 9%, respectively.

Sorghum was in mostly fair condition, while heading progressed to 86% statewide. Sorghum coloring was at 59% last week, while 27% of the crop was mature.

Soybeans were in mostly fair condition, but the crop in most areas was in critical shape from lack of moisture. Rainfall is needed for proper filling of pods to occur.

Cotton and peanuts were rated in mostly good-to-fair condition statewide. As of Sept. 3, nearly all peanuts in the state had set pods. Dryland peanuts continued to show signs of stress, while most irrigated peanuts still are in good condition.

Alfalfa and all other hay were in mostly fair condition. The fourth cutting of alfalfa progressed last week to 65% complete and remained well ahead of the five-year average of 47%. The fifth cutting of alfalfa progressed primarily in the central part of the state and is 12% cut. Hay conditions in the southern and western districts have been the most affected by the hot and dry conditions.

Pastures continued to suffer from the hot and dry conditions, especially in the southern districts. Livestock being fed hay continued in areas most hurt from absence of adequate pastures. Pasture conditions continued to decline and were rated in fair to poor condition. Grasshoppers and armyworms continued to be a burden in the western and southern districts.

Livestock remained in mostly good condition. Cattle auctions reported average marketings for the week.

Water levels continued to decrease across the state as ponds and creeks are drying up and cattle producers in critical areas are hauling water to their herds.

Insect pressures on cattle continued to be moderate to light statewide.

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