Oklahoma’s winter wheat crop thriving despite 5% planting reduction

Winter wheat is thriving is some areas despite a five-percent reduction in planted acres in Oklahoma. However, pasture and rangeland still face challenges posed by ongoing drought.

In the face of fluctuating weather conditions, winter wheat in Oklahoma is flourishing, providing optimism despite a five-percent reduction in planted acres. Oklahoma Farm Report caught up with Kim Anderson, a grain market economist at Oklahoma State, who reassured that the high quality of the crop should prevent major supply issues.

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA) Meteorologist Brad Rippey attributes this positive outcome to a substantial reduction in drought coverage in the winter wheat production areas:

“We have seen a roughly halving of the drought coverage in our winter wheat production areas during the month of January,” Rippey said. “Last month, we saw almost a third — or 32% — of the winter wheat production area in drought, which has now dropped to 17%.”

Despite these promising developments, Rippey notes that pasture and rangeland areas face challenges, with more than half rated in poor to very poor conditions. States like New Mexico and Texas report concerning figures of 64% and 58%, respectively, despite recent drought relief. In the northern region, Montana registers 54% in very poor to poor conditions. However, there have been improvements in pasture and range land conditions in Oklahoma, Arizona, and Tennessee.

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