Wheat Harvest 2015: Combines move to durum and canola

Wheat Harvest 2015: Combines move to durum and canola

Spring wheat harvest winds down

Editor's note: This will be the final "Wheat Harvest 2015" report for this year. Thanks for reading!

Spring wheat in North Dakota is nearly harvested and a number of custom harvesters are focused on cutting durum wheat and canola.

In spring wheat, the yields continue to range from 40 to 60 bushels per acre and test weights have been at or above 60 pounds a bushel. A weekend storm flattened some fields near the Canadian border, but harvesters have been able to recover that grain.

Spring wheat harvest winds down

In Kenmare, northwest of Minot, harvester Myron Eberts said some of the spring wheat plants were green and it may be about two weeks before the last fields will be ready for harvest. What has been cut yielded about 40 bushels, which Eberts said was lower than previous years for that area.

Ergot, a fungus disease that blackens the wheat kernels, was evident in some spring wheat fields but was not widespread, he said.

Spring wheat from northwest North Dakota had 14% to 15% protein and 62 to 63 pound test weights, said harvester Shorty Kulhanek, who forecast the spring wheat and canola harvests in that area should be done next week.

"The durum crop was pretty good until it rained," said harvester Irvin Odegard, who is cutting north of Minot. "It knocked off about $2 a bushel."

The durum graded lower after the rain, he said, bringing the price down to about $5 a bushel from $7.


Durum near Tioga in the northwest section of the state yielded 30 to 50 bushels and tested 58 to 59 pounds.

"It was really cool up here this spring, that was part of the problem," harvester Janel Wolf said of the lower yields.

Canola has been yielding 2,000 pounds or more per acre, he said.

USDA said North Dakota's spring wheat harvest was 70% done as of Sunday compared with the 41% average. The state said the durum harvest was 37% done, which was ahead of 8% last year and the 23% average and it rated the durum 82% good to excellent, 17% fair and 1% poor.

North Dakota's canola was 33% harvested as of Sunday and rated 78% good to excellent, 20% fair and 25% poor.

South Dakota's spring wheat harvest was at 86% versus the 81% average, while Montana's was at 69% versus the 33% average. USDA does not provide harvest updates for durum wheat.

USDA forecasts North Dakota spring wheat production at 297.6 million bushels on 48 bushels per acre and durum at 38.52 million on 36 bushels. A year ago, the state produced 291.65 million bushels of spring with a 47.5 yield and 28.22 million of durum with a 35.5 yield.

In Montana, spring wheat production is forecast at 85.25 million bushels on 2.75 million acres, for an average yield of 31. In 2014, the state produced 104.3 million bushels on 2.98 million acres.

Wheat harvest 8/20: Fast harvest finds good spring wheat

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