Calgary

71% of Alberta farm crops rated in good or excellent condition after rainy June

The recent wet weather has helped farmers in some parts of Alberta, with most areas receiving at least 80 millimetres of precipitation in June.

But conditions remain too dry in parts of southern and eastern Alberta

Greg Hawkwood says June rains have helped crop and cattle production on his farm near Cochrane. (CBC)

The recent wet weather has helped farmers in some parts of Alberta.

According to the latest Alberta crop report, most areas received at least 80 millimetres of precipitation in June.

But parts of south and eastern Alberta are still struggling with drier conditions.

Greg Hawkwood says June rains have helped crop and cattle production and soil moisture reserves on his farm northwest of Calgary.

"Last year at this time, the grass was getting brown, the pastures were just about done," he said.

But the precipitation pattern appears to have played out like a patchwork across the province so far this season, he added.

According to the latest Alberta crop report, most areas received at least 80 millimetres of precipitation in June. (CBC)

"It would be nice if we could kind of send this down south and east and so everybody benefits."

Overall, the province says recent rain has boosted growing conditions and that 71 per cent of Alberta's crops are now rated as being in "good or excellent condition." Surface and sub-surface soil moisture reserves improved significantly from a week ago. 

As of June 25, surface soil moisture for Alberta was rated at 11 per cent poor, 25 per cent fair, and 54 per cent good.

The province says recent precipitation has been spotty in southern Alberta, affecting crops and pastures. It might already be too late for some older forage fields to recover.

But Humphrey Banack with the Alberta Federation of Agriculture says any precipitation will help.

"Farmers are traditionally optimists and I think we saw some rainfall across most of Alberta over the last week or 10 days, so they're hoping that whatever's out there has a chance to regrow and come back," he said.

"But they're going to need extensive, long-term rains to get that done."

With files from Dave Gilson

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.