The condition of the wheat crop improved slightly, according to Kansas Agricultural Statistics and Kansas State University Research and Extension Service March 13.

With the warm temperatures and moisture, wheat has greened up and started to grow. The winter wheat condition is rated 8% excellent, 34% good, 42% fair, 13% poor and 3% very poor.

Statewide, 7% of the crop is jointing, compared to 3% in 1999 and the average of 2%.

Freeze damage to the wheat is reported to be 1% moderate, 9% light and 90% with no damage. Wind damage is judged to be 1% light and 82% with no damage.

Fortunately, the field surfaces were wet and little damage resulted from the strong winds last week.

Greenbugs and army cutworms are becoming more widespread, with some fields treated. Although diseases are present, they are considered to be light, at this time.

Wheat that emerged several weeks ago is growing rapidly.

Spring oat seedings progressed to 33% complete, well behind the 60% seeded at this time last year and behind the average of 48%.

Statewide, there were 2.5 days suitable for fieldwork, due to the moisture received the week before last. Major field activities were limited by wet field conditions; however, scouting wheat and alfalfa for pests took place, along with preparing machinery for corn planting and catching up on book work.

Topsoil moisture was rated 1% very short, 11% short, 72% adequate and 16% surplus. The subsoil moisture profile was rated 4% very short, 25% short, 68% adequate and 3% surplus.

Burning of ranges has started as conditions allow. Pasture conditions also improved from the previous week, with the moisture, and are rated 1% very poor, 11% poor, 41% fair and 44% good and 3% excellent.

Spring calving and lambing are going well, with only limited losses reported.

Cattle and calves remain on the last of the stalks, and some are moving off wheat pasture to feedlots, depending on available space and progress of the wheat.

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