Articles for October 2016

North Dakota Canola Variety Trial Results for 2016 and Selection Guide

Canola is a major oil crop in the northern Great Plains, particularly in North Dakota. In 2016, North Dakota accounted for approximately 82 percent of the canola acreage planted in the U.S. This publication summarizes canola variety performance at the various North Dakota State University Research Extension Centers. The relative performance of the hybrids is presented in table form. Give special attention to yield results of those trials nearest to your production area when evaluating varieties or hybrids in these trials. Also, attempt to view yield averages of several years rather than using only one year’s data as a determining factor. In addition, consider other agronomic characteristics, such as maturity, lodging score and oil percentages, if available. Research specialists and technicians helped with the field work and data compilation. The assistance given by many secretaries in typing respective portions of the document is very much appreciated. A special thank you goes to Lisa Johnson, Extension Plant Sciences secretary, for assisting in the compilation of this publication. 2016 Growing Season UpdateCanola fieldwork began by the end of April. Planting was earlier than normal, and by May 15, 60 percent of the acres had been planted compared with the average of 37 percent on the same date. On May 15, the topsoil moisture was rated at 74 percent adequate and 2 percent surplus. Early canola stands varied across the region, depending on soil moisture availability and rainfall after planting. Some early planted acres were replanted due to frost damage to the crop during the first half of May. By July 10, 95 percent of the canola crop was flowering, compared with the average of 63 percent on the same day. By the last week in July, the North Dakota office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service reported the canola crop condition as 69 percent “good” and 9 percent “excellent.” Already 82 percent of the canola acres were harvested on Sept. 11. By Sept. 25, 94 percent of the canola was harvested, which was near average. In general, the 2016 season started early and the average yield forecast is 1,770 pounds per acre, a record high for North Dakota.

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USDA October Crop Production Report

The first canola production forecast for 2016 is 2.99 billion pounds, up 4 percent from the revised 2015 production of 2.88 billion pounds. If realized, this will be the largest production on record for the United States. Area planted, at 1.71 million acres, is up less than 1 percent from the June estimate but down 4 percent from last year. Canola farmers expect to harvest 1.69 million acres, up 2 percent from June but down 1 percent from 2015. Planted area for the Nation is the fourth largest on record, and harvested area for the Nation will be the third largest on record, if realized. The October yield forecast, at 1,768 pounds per acre, is 88 pounds above last year’s yield and will be the second highest on record, if realized.

The yield in North Dakota, the largest canola-producing State, is forecast at 1,770 pounds per acre, down 10 pounds from last year’s yield. Planted area in North Dakota is estimated at 1.46 million acres, an increase of 4 percent from 2015.  Canola production in North Dakota is forecast at a record 2.57 billion pounds, up 3 percent from last year.

Generally beneficial spring weather allowed the planting of the crop to progress well ahead of last year. Maturation of the crop was ahead of normal throughout the growing season and harvest was underway by early August.