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K-State Agronomy eUpdates

Department of Agronomy

Kansas State University

1712 Claflin Rd.

2004 Throckmorton PSC

Manhatan, KS 66506

785-532-6101

agronomy@ksu.edu

Extension Agronomy

Comparative Vegetation Condition Report: June 17 - 30

K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory (EASAL) produces weekly Vegetation Condition Report maps. These maps can be a valuable tool for making crop selection and marketing decisions.

Two short videos of Dr. Kevin Price explaining the development of these maps can be viewed on YouTube at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRP3Y5NIggw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUdOK94efxc

The objective of these reports is to provide users with a means of assessing the relative condition of crops and grassland. The maps can be used to assess current plant growth rates, as well as comparisons to the previous year and relative to the 25-year average. The report is used by individual farmers and ranchers, the commodities market, and political leaders for assessing factors such as production potential and drought impact across their state.

NOTE TO READERS: The maps below represent a subset of the maps available from the EASAL group. If you’d like digital copies of the entire map series please contact NanAn at nanan@ksu.edu and we can place you on our email list to receive the entire dataset each week as they are produced. The maps are normally first available on Wednesday of each week, unless there is a delay in the posting of the data by EROSDataCenter where we obtain the raw data used to make the maps. These maps are provided for free as a service of the Department of Agronomy and K-State Research and Extension.

The maps in this issue of the newsletter show the current state of photosynthetic activity in Kansas, the Corn Belt, and the continental U.S., with comments from Mary Knapp, service climatologist:

Figure 1. The Vegetation Condition Report for Kansas for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the areas of high photosynthetic activity are moving into central and southwestern Kansas as rainfall in these areas increase. There are still large areas of low biomass production in west central and the western counties of southwest Kansas.

 

Figure 2. Compared to the previous year at this time for Kansas, the current Vegetation Condition Report for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that most of the state has much higher NDVI values. The greatest increases are from Wallace to Ness counties and in Clark County. Sharon Springs, in Wallace County, reported 2.68 inches in June this year, compared to 0.56 inches last June.

Figure 3. Compared to the 25-year average at this time for Kansas, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that northwest Kansas has the largest area of above-average biomass production. Timely rains, coupled with favorable temperatures, have benefitted vegetation in the region.

Figure 4. The Vegetation Condition Report for the Corn Belt for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the greatest area of high biomass production is in the area from northeastern Minnesota to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Photosynthetic activity is lower in eastern North Dakota through western Minnesota. Heavy rains continued to delay field work in these areas. In southwest Kansas, the continued drought has limited biomass production in.

Figure 5. The comparison to last year in the Corn Belt for the period June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the central and western portions of the Corn Belt have the greatest increase in photosynthetic activity. Favorable rainfall coupled with favorable temperatures have accelerated photosynthetic activity in these areas.

 

Figure 6. Compared to the 25-year average at this time for the Corn Belt, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that North Dakota has the largest area of below-average biomass production. Cool, wet weather continues to hamper field work. Topsoil moisture in North Dakota is rated 34 percent surplus and 64 percent adequate.

 

Figure 7. The Vegetation Condition Report for the U.S. for June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the highest NDVI values are in northern New England and along the Pacific Northwest. The Pennsylvania Crop Report indicates corn grew 10 inches in the last week.

 

Figure 8. The U.S. comparison to last year at this time for the period June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the biggest area of increase is in the western High Plains. Eastern Wyoming is showing particularly high NDVI values compared to last year. The U.S. Drought Monitor shows this region to be drought-free now, whereas last year it was in moderate to extreme drought.

Figure 9. The U.S. comparison to the 25-year average for the period June 17 – 30 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the Northern Plains has the biggest contrast. Along the border of Wyoming, South Dakota, and Nebraska photosynthetic activity is much higher than average. This region has seen the combination of favorable moisture and temperatures. In North Dakota, much lower-than-average NDVI values are present. This region has seen excessive moisture and cool temperatures.

 

Mary Knapp, Weather Data Library
mknapp@ksu.edu     

Kevin Price, Professor Emeritus, Agronomy and Geography, Remote Sensing, GIS
kpprice@ksu.edu

NanAn, Graduate Research Assistant, Ecology & Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory (EASAL)
nanan@ksu.edu