Sunflower Highlights
Post Date: Sep 07 2021
Crop Progress - Tuesday, September 7, 2021
State This Week Last Week Last Year 5 Year Average
North Dakota        
Petals Dry 84 60 80 75
Bracts Yellow 46 24 45 45
Mature 14 5 9 9
Harvested NA 53 54 43
Crop Conditions - Tuesday, September 7, 2021
State Timeframe Very Poor Poor Fair Good Excellent
North Dakota This week 10 26 38 25 1
  Last week 8 33 39 19 1
Minnesota This week 8 14 33 45 0
  Last week 9 15 41 34 1
Colorado This week 1 7 27 62 3
  Last week 1 12 34 47 6
Monitor for Phomopsis Stem Canker
This time of year, it is important to scout for Phomopsis stem canker. To identify Phomopsis stem canker, look for tan to dark brown colored lesion on the stem. In addition, the stem becomes hollow and can be punctured with thumb. Febina Mathew’s lab is looking for sunflower plant samples that are suspected of Phomopsis stem canker and other stem diseases (Phoma, Sclerotinia, etc.). Sam Markell has prepared a good video on sunflower diseases including Phomopsis stem canker and explains how to store samples before shipping: My Meeting - Zoom The address to send samples (only the stem) is Febina Mathew, South Dakota State University, Agronomy, Horticulture, and Plant Science Department, SPSB 113, Box 2108, Brookings, SD 57007. We appreciate everyone’s efforts to get the NSA survey going this year. For information on the samples, please contact Febina Mathew at learn more about common stem diseases in sunflower, visit Sunflower Disease Diagnostic Series — Publications (
Sunflower prices were unchanged to up 50 cents last week at the crush plants. In the past month, prices at the plants have been moving toward previous historical highs and are trading at a $15.00 per cwt. premium to last year at this same time. Birdfood prices have also been on the rise gaining up to $4.00 in some locations last week. Birdfood is trading mostly around $30.00-$31.00 in South Dakota with North Dakota prices trading for as much as $33.00 in some locations. Very warm to hot temperatures in the past month along with drier soil conditions has pushed the crop toward maturity in the Dakotas and Minnesota. Overall crop conditions have improved slightly in the past few weeks however drought is still affecting the crop with most of it in only fair condition.  Below average moisture conditions are expected to persist in the parched Northern and High Plains for at least the next two weeks. This will likely continue accelerating crop maturation which is ahead of the five-year average pace. If possible and if the crop has matured to a point where it can be desiccated and harvested this month, it is advisable to do so. Getting the crop harvested several weeks early can result in higher yields and lower drying costs. It can also reduce late season crop damage and blackbird damage. In October, USDA will provide its first estimate of 2021 oil and non-oil sunflower production. This report and demand will set the tone for sunflower price direction in the near term.
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