Crop Progress - State Stories

IDAHO: The Statewide temperatures in Idaho for the month of December were normal to above average throughout the State. Some storm activity picked up in the latter part of December. Some of that moisture fell as rain in northern Idaho, where winter had gotten off to a mild start. Higher elevations in northern Idaho reported good snow cover. Winter wheat was in good shape in Lewis County, although snow cover was needed before freezing temperatures arrived. It was still early for early calving in Idaho County. In the lower elevations of Boundary County, snow melted in portions of the valley, and green grass was visible. In southwest Idaho, early winter weather was seasonably cold with limited precipitation to date. Calving was just getting underway. Hay stocks of all classes were in good supply. Minimal snow and precipitation was reported in Elmore County. South central Idaho was dry and observed above average temperatures. There was not much winter stress on livestock or crops. In Camas County, there was little farming activity. A few feet of snow settled on the valley floor. The county hoped for more snow. Southeastern Idaho reported spotty snow and drier than normal conditions in most places. Cold temperatures were reported in Madison County. Most of the fields were snow covered. In Fremont County, most operations fed livestock and prepared for calving season. In Teton County, dry high-pressure weather patterns dominated the weather early in the month. Some bare pasture was observed. This was followed by snow later in the month. Grass-fed livestock producers were feeding hay for roughly a month.

MONTANA: This report for Montana is for the entire month of December 2020. Topsoil moisture 15% very short, 46% short, 39% adequate. Subsoil moisture 13% very short, 42% short, 45% adequate. Winter wheat - condition 1% very poor, 4% poor, 30% fair, 58% good, 7% excellent. Winter wheat – wind damage 72% none, 14% light, 8% moderate, 6% heavy. Winter wheat – freeze and drought damage 83% none, 13% light, 3% moderate, 1% heavy. Winter wheat – protectiveness of snow cover 44% very poor, 56% poor. Pasture and range - condition 14% very poor, 28% poor, 50% fair, 8% good. Livestock grazing accessibility – 94% open, 6% difficult. Livestock receiving supplemental feed – cattle and calves 86% fed. Livestock receiving supplemental feed – sheep and lambs 85% fed. The month of December was exceptionally warm and dry for Montana, according to the Mountain Regional Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA. Reporters across the State noted a lack of precipitation and high winds throughout the month of December. Temperatures across the State were higher than the daily historical averages for a majority of the month. High temperatures ranged from the high 20s to the mid-60s. Low temperatures ranged from the mid-40s to the teens. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, approximately 63 percent of Montana is in a current state of drought, with about 8 percent of the State in severe or extreme drought.

NEVADA: Topsoil moisture 50% very short, 10% short, 30% adequate, 10% surplus. Subsoil moisture 70% very short, 25% short, 5% adequate. Temperatures for the month averaged 32.2 degrees, 0.4 degrees above normal. Statewide average precipitation was 0.65 inches.

OREGON: Statewide temperatures in Oregon for the month of December remained near normal to above average with heavy rain activity reported throughout the State. Benton, Lincoln, and Linn Counties reported extreme amounts of rainfall in the Willamette Valley caused creeks to overflow into fields and across backcountry roads. The grass crops looked good and provided grazing for livestock. In Polk County, winter wheat crops looked good. Grass seed crops looked average. Annual ryegrass grew well. Other grass seed crops were dormant due to the high water table or low temperatures. High Vole numbers were a problem; however, the rainy December may affect their numbers. Pasture grasses had no growth so most livestock feeding took place in barns. Goats and sheep were in barns preparing for kidding or lambing. In Columbia, Multnomah, and Washington Counties, fall planted crops were doing well. Some areas reported sporadic geese damage. High water occurred in rivers, which spilled out into fields in Clatsop and Tillamook Counties, leaving standing water in places. Pastures and cover crops looked good. Some geese and elk activity occurred. In Hood River, Sherman, and Wasco Counties, wheat was up and looked good. Livestock were also doing well with calving just around the corner for some producers. Winter wheat crops looked good in Morrow County. Baker, Grant, and Malheur Counties had snow followed by warm temperatures and rain. Winter wheat was in fair to good conditions in Umatilla and Wallowa Counties. Spotty fields filled in with the mild temperatures and rainfall. Douglas, Jackson, and Josephine Counties benefitted from the substantial winter rains recharging soil moisture. In vineyards and orchards, workers were pruning. Central Oregon reported normal rainfall and very little snow needed for the irrigation season. Snow pack was sparse in Klamath County.

UTAH: This report for Utah is for the entire month of December, 2020. Topsoil moisture 18% very short, 52% short, 30% adequate. Subsoil moisture 26% very short, 39% short, 35% adequate. Pasture and range condition 24% very poor, 35% poor, 33% fair, 7% good, 1% excellent. Winter wheat condition 5% very poor, 22% poor, 58% fair, 15% good. Hay and roughage supplies 2% very short, 17% short, 69% adequate, 12% surplus. Stock water supplies 21% very short, 34% short, 44% adequate, 1% surplus. Cattle and calves condition 1% very poor, 4% poor, 31% fair, 61% good, 3% excellent. Sheep and lambs condition 3% poor, 37% fair, 58% good, 2% excellent. Livestock receiving supplemental feed for cattle 78%. Livestock receiving supplemental feed for sheep 56%. Extremely dry conditions have caused water supplies to deteriorate.

WASHINGTON: The Statewide temperatures in Washington for the month of December were slightly below normal to above normal throughout the State. In San Juan County, the month of December was extremely wet. Many lowland fields were flooded with storm water. Most ponds had already filled, which was about two months early. Livestock were on stockpiled feed and those farms with adequate heavy-use areas with cover had livestock out of the weather. The pruning of berry crops was completed in some locations with orchard trees and vines to be next. In Skagit County, the fields were very wet. In Snohomish County, it was so wet that nothing was happening outside. Fields were beyond saturated. Water pooled everywhere. Seed orders were commencing. In Yakima County, vegetable fields were mostly tilled and ready to plant. Orchards were in the process of being pruned and trained. There was a significant amount of orchard tear out. In Klickitat County, moisture was received. No cropping happened at this time of the year. Ranchers were busy feeding livestock in ideal conditions, due to the lack of snow. In northeast Washington, the winter had been mild. Snow was received in the northern part of Stevens County on December 30. In east central Washington, snow continued to accumulate, providing insulation to winter wheat and alleviating drought conditions. No fieldwork was occurring. Crop conditions were good. Winter wheat conditions were normal. Cattle were being moved to feeding grounds. In southwest Washington, most winter crops looked good. The soil moisture content was coming back up due to the winter rains.

WYOMING: This report for Wyoming is for the entire month of December 2020. Topsoil moisture 35% very short, 44% short, 21% adequate. Subsoil moisture 49% very short, 33% short, 18% adequate. Winter wheat condition 5% very poor, 9% poor, 71% fair, 10% good, 5% excellent. Livestock condition 3% poor, 28% fair, 68% excellent, 1% excellent. Stock water supplies 15% very short, 14% short, 71% adequate. Hay and roughage supplies 18% very short, 21% short, 60% adequate, 1% surplus. Pasture and range condition 23% very poor, 24% poor, 41% fair, 12% good. Wyoming’s drought conditions held fast for the month of December. According to the National Integrated Drought Information System’s report released December 31, 2020, the amount of land rated abnormally dry, moderately dry, severely dry, and extremely dry were 8.3%, 33.2%, 28.4% and 25.4%, respectively. A small portion of the State was experiencing exceptional drought conditions at 0.4%. Producers are hoping for sufficient spring moisture given the current lack of precipitation. Snow was on the ground in areas of the Southwest, but totals were below normal. Dryness persisted in East-central portions of the State according to one reporter, with below normal snowpack.

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