Ukraine. Winter rape crops protected by snow


Last week saw a sharp cold spell and heavy snowfalls. As a result, the entire country is snow-covered now, reports UkrAgroConsult.

As of early March, the soil was frozen to a depth of 5-6 cm in the south of Ukraine, 7-9 cm in the west, 19-26 cm in the central regions, 20-25 cm in the east and 28-30 cm in the north. Minimum soil temperatures at the tillering node depth were 0-90С below freezing – this is not critical for well-developed plants.

The 2017/18 winter conditions (frequent and quite long thaws, thawed soil under a thick layer of snow) have both conditionally positive and negative effects. A noteworthy positive effect is that, under this winter’s weather pattern, plants that entered the dormancy period at the three-leaf stage have already developed 2-4 tillers and secondary roots. Well-developed plants also have got additional tillers and secondary roots. Such crops are prepared for the generative type of development in case if spring growth starts late and air temperatures rise rapidly. Growth and development of late-sown crops, which will wake up from the winter having neither tillering nodes nor secondary roots, will go the way of survival.

The negative consequences of these winter conditions include significant weakening of plants at the end of winter, their fungal disease infestation and possible drop-out.

At the moment, the condition of roughly 89% of winter rape plantings is rated mostly good and fair.

 More information on crop conditions in the countries of Black Sea Region is available to subscribers for weekly market report "Black Sea Grain" by UkrAgroConsult.



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