Sunflower Highlights
Post Date: Aug 09 2021
Crop Progress - Monday, August 9, 2021
State This Week Last Week Last Year 5 Year Average
North Dakota        
Blooming 76 49 75 74
Petals Dry NA -- 2 --
Harvested 34 30 38 31
Crop Conditions - Monday, August 9, 2021
State Timeframe Very Poor Poor Fair Good Excellent
North Dakota This week 9 33 41 15 2
  Last week 9 26 40 23 2
Minnesota This week 7 16 45 32 0
  Last week 6 16 46 32 0
Colorado This week 0 8 29 58 5
  Last week 0 8 25 62 5
Keep Scouting for Insects
As sunflower fields begin to bloom, adults of red sunflower seed weevil (RSSW) will be emerging and will fly to the nearest flowering sunflowers. Trap catches for banded sunflower moth (BSM) and Arthuri sunflower moths (SM) have increased in the last week and are at economic thresholds for control in some locations. See maps on NDSU’s IPM website: Sunflower Insect Trap — ND IPM ( Severe infestations of RSSW and moths can be very damaging to the sunflower head and result in seed loss. Once the decision to treat has been made, it is critical to time the spray application correctly to get effective management of all sunflower head insects including RSSW, BSM, SM, and Lygus bug. The best sunflower plant stage to treat is when the majority of plants are in the R5.1 growth stage. To read more about scouting for insects and the best treatments, visit
Scout for Grasshoppers
Be vigilant on scouting for grasshoppers. Adult grasshoppers are becoming more common and can do more damage quickly to maturing field crops. NDSU IPM Scouts detected increasing numbers in most areas of North Dakota last week. Action Threshold for Adult Grasshoppers: 21-40 per square yard in field margins or 8-14 per square yard in the field.
Severe to exceptional drought conditions continue to grip the sunflower growing region of the Dakotas and Minnesota. Crops such as canola, soybeans, corn are in decline, showing symptoms of stress, even sunflowers are wilting in some areas. Sunflowers are mostly in the early to late bloom stages in the Dakotas and Minnesota. The crop could use a good drink during this important development phase as most areas of the region have had little to no measurable moisture in over three weeks. Unless moisture arrives soon yields will most likely be below trendline levels. The long-range weather forecast does not bode well for a break in the weather pattern as hot and dry weather is expected to dominate the month of August. Birdfood prices were unchanged to up 50 cents this week. Birdfood bids are trading at $28.50-$29.50 in North Dakota. South Dakota birdfood prices were trading for as much as $30.00 in some locations. Traders are also getting into position for USDA’s August crop reports. August 12th will be a huge day for commodity markets as USDA will release its latest supply and demand reports. It is also anticipated that the first report of USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) certified acres will be released as well. The FSA figures will be compared to the USDA June acreage report and will give the market a better idea of what got planted this year. USDA reports and weather conditions will guide traders in the coming weeks.
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