Rain hampering southern Alberta farmers
The continuing rain is creating problems for southern Alberta farmers who still need to seed their crop.
Stephen Vandervalk, who farms near the Southern Alberta town of Granum, says he has about a week left to get all the seeds into the ground in order to qualify for crop insurance. He estimates he's about 85 percent done.
"I suspect we won't actually seed any more this year. I've got a private forecaster that is forecasting rain right into the middle of next week and at that point we might be finished for the year."
"Crop insurance is basically your safety net," he said. "You're guaranteed so many dollars per acre. If you don't have that then basically you're on your own. So it makes it very stressful."
About 57 per cent of provincial farmland has been seeded, according to a provincial crop report released on Wednesday. That compares to a historical five year average of about 65 to 70 per cent.
"Weather conditions in the province during the last two weeks have been mainly warm, dry and windy, despite some precipitation reported in many areas. Overall, seeding has been progressing rapidly," states the report.
Farmers were off to a slow start this spring due to heavy winter snow and cool temperatures in March and April.
Seeding is also behind in Saskatchewan. A government report last week concluded that only 23 per cent had been completed, compared to a five year average of 44 per cent, thanks to rain and saturated fields.