New surveys show nearly half of Nebraska’s winter wheat crops is rated poor to very poor, with only ten-percent in good condition.
State Wheat Commission executive director Royce Schaneman says the crop went downhill over the winter with the continuing drought.
“We’re lacking moisture,” Schaneman says, “and I think through a lot of the Plains states, they probably have the same situation we do.”
Schaneman says it doesn’t help that the winter wheat never got off to a very good start.
He says, “We probably had some smaller, weaker plants going into the winter with it being pretty open winter, we’re maybe a little more susceptible to winter kill or winter injury problems.”
He says the worst conditions are in southwest and northwest parts of the state, with a slight improvement in the east after some recent rains. Moisture is critical this spring, or he says many acres will simply be abandoned.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton