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Snow Halts Sunflower Harvest

Manitoba's sunflower harvest was slowly getting underway before the storm hit this past weekend.
 
Ben Friesen is with Scoular Canada.
 
"There's a lot of fields that are turned really black because they've been desiccated, so they're ready to go," he said. "Now with the snow and rain, one of our concerns now will be for those guys to be able to drive...The guys are installing some more tracks on combines and they feel that if the sun shines this week, Friday/Saturday, they're definitely going to go out with the combines and try to do some harvesting."
 
Friesen says there doesn't seem to be a lot of breakage from the storm, as it appears the rain washed snow off the plants before damage could occur.
 
He talked about the potential for this year's crop.
 
"The yields we're thinking, a decent average again. There's obviously some fields really higher and some fields lower but that's normal. I think the yield will be an average. The quality was quite good up until this last week...The desiccated fields, when you drive by, you can see some white heads. Those white heads obviously are head rot, but you normally anticipate to have some of those on every field."
 
Friesen says the sunflowers that were not desiccated will still need some colder temperatures so they can dry down.
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