Oklahoma Annual Wheat Crop Report Estimates 51% Fewer Bushels Produced Compared to 2021Tue, 03 May 2022 17:34:39 CDT
At the Oklahoma Grain and Feed Association's Annual Wheat Crop Report, Reagan Calk, Associate Farm Editor spoke with Josh Bushong, Oklahoma State University Agronomist Specialist, about the 2022 Oklahoma wheat yield estimates.
Wheat for Oklahoma was estimated to be at 58 million bushels in 2022. This is 51% less than 2021, which was 115 million bushels.
"The two main factors are harvested acres and lower yield," Bushong said. "We just didn't get the moisture in time. We didn't get that tiller development and we also lost some stands throughout the winter because we just didn't get that crop established very well."
Limited root mass, Bushong said is another contributor to the low wheat yield estimate in 2022.
"We didn't get the tillers last fall for wheat pasture, and we didn't get those tillers back this spring because of the prolonged drought most of the wheat belt in Oklahoma has faced this year," Bushong said.
Bushong said along with the lack of tiller development, the few heads that developed were small.
"When we are developing those heads back in the jointing stage, or before the jointing stage, we were still well in that drought," Bushong said. "We have had some rains here recently, but for the most part, it is not going to add to the bulk of the crop."
Even though the wheat price is high, Bushong said it still doesn't justify some of the acres that are only going to yield three to ten bushels per acre, which is not harvestable.
"We are looking at sub-12-inch-tall wheat and it's really hard to get a combine in there," Bushong said. "We are looking at a short crop, thin crop, and a dual-purpose crop. We have seen a lot of guys needing the pasture, so we have been grazing out."
Even though the stocking rates have been lighter, Bushong said many pulled stockers off early last fall, then needed a place to go. As the outlook on the wheat grain crop went down, Bushong said they started kicking those back out this spring.
"We had a real uptick in graze-out this year," Bushong said. "There is going to be a little bit that is terminated summer crop and some that is going to try to be a hay crop but what has been laid down so far is pretty thin windrows."
The drought and relentless wind this spring have dried things out in a hurry, Bushong said. What little rain we have had has been too small to account for much, so we basically lost it as quick as we got it, he added.
"With the wheat price where it is at, we still have a lot of guys wanting to get back to wheat this fall to try to get some more acres contracted," Bushong said. "The seed wheat is going to be an issue we are looking at."
With fewer acres being harvested this year, Bushong said the fields we do have might be kept for seed wheat. Some of those fields are going to be a little weedy and grain quality might not be there, but overall, Bushong said he perceives seed wheat being an issue this fall.
"Overall, our diseases have been very light throughout western Oklahoma," Bushong said. "We have had some viruses, mostly wheat streak mosaic virus."
Weeds have been our typical suspects, Bushong said, with wild oats being pretty bad in southwest Oklahoma, especially with this short crop.
"We were delayed breaking dormancy this spring, but once we did break, we broke quick," Bushong said.
Click the LISTEN BAR below to hear more of Josh Bushong on factors influencing estimated wheat production for 2022.
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