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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: July 1 - 14

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 24-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 Kevin Price at kpprice@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 EROS Data Center 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, state climatologist:

 

 

 

Figure 1. The Vegetation Condition Report for Kansas for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that higher NDVI values have penetrated into western Kansas. Higher photosynthetic activity is due to more favorable temperatures and moisture levels.

 

Figure 2. Compared to the previous year at this time for Kansas, the current Vegetation Condition Report for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that much of the state has much higher photosynthetic activity. Exceptions can be seen in west central and southwest Kansas, where moisture has been more recent and plants have yet to respond.

Figure 3. Compared to the 25-year average at this time for Kansas, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that much below-average NDVI values are concentrated in southwest Kansas, particularly in Hamilton, Stanton, Morton, Grant, and northwestern Stevens and southern Greeley counties. These areas have missed out on much of the recent rains, and are still in extreme drought conditions.

Figure 4. The Vegetation Condition Report for the Corn Belt for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that most of the low photosynthetic activity is in the western portions of the region, although there are pockets of lower productivity where excessive moisture has created problems. In Illinois, where 61 percent of the corn has tasseled, conditions are reported as 81 percent good to excellent.

Figure 5. The comparison to last year in the Corn Belt for the period July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that western Minnesota and southern Missouri have lower NDVI values. Cool, wet conditions are the major factors in this decrease. 

 

Figure 6. Compared to the 25-year average at this time for the Corn Belt, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows the center of the region has the biggest area of below-average photosynthetic activity. Cool, wet conditions have been the biggest factor in this decrease, although extreme drought is the culprit in southwest Kansas.

 

 

Figure 7. The Vegetation Condition Report for the U.S. for July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the greatest level of photosynthetic activity is in the Northeast. Areas from West Virginia through upstate New York have high biomass production at this time.

 

Figure 8. The U.S. comparison to last year at this time for the period July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows increased photosynthetic activity in the central Plains and the East. Meanwhile, Montana and area along the Pacific Northwest have lower photosynthetic activity. 

Figure 9. The U.S. comparison to the 25-year average for the period July 1 – 14 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that most of the country is near normal. The East has generally higher-than-average biomass production. The Plains region is a dividing line. To the east, the low productivity is the result of cool, wet conditions. To the west the low values are the result of continued drought.

 

Mary Knapp, State Climatologist
mknapp@ksu.edu          

Kevin Price, Agronomy and Geography, Remote Sensing, Natural Resources, GIS
kpprice@ksu.edu

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