With lots of heat in the forecast, farmers are gearing up for a busy weekend.

Justine Cornelsen, Agronomic & Regulatory Services Manager with BrettYoung, says much of the Manitoba canola crop is near the swath timing stage.

"It seems like this week everyone brought the swather out," she commented. "Just travelling around the province a little bit, things are coming down. I actually have come across a few fields that were ready to be straight cut already and growers were in there. Things are moving and this heat this week and into the next two weeks would really help progress things. I think a lot of acres are going to end up being swathed just based on how late seeding was within the province but then also crop variability. Dropping it down in a swath allows everything to mature and it's just an easier way to keep a control on it and I think to help split up the harvest season. A lot of those fall cereals have come off already. A bulk of our crops are all going to be done around the same time this year, so putting a few things down in the swath just helps push it in the right direction."

Cornelsen reminds farmers to wait for 60% seed colour change before swathing in order to maximize yield and quality.

She says most of Manitoba's canola crop is looking really good.

"It's been a great summer for it once it did get into the ground," she commented. "We were warm but not above and beyond and really hot like we were last summer. We had lots of moisture and then cool overnight lows. There wasn't many nights where we had that really elevated extreme in comparison to last year, so perfect conditions for canola. It is a cooler climate crop. It will be interesting to see what the combine starts to report."

Manitoba Agricultures says that some desiccation has started on the most advanced fields, while swathing is common on uneven fields. 

Canola swathing has started in the Central, Eastern, and Interlake regions. 

Later fields are still in mid pod-fill stage.

Early fields are being harvested in the Winkler area and average yields are slightly less than expected at 50 to 55 bu/acre. Later crops are expected to surpass those numbers. Average yields on canola in the Southwest region near Melita were reported at 40 to 45 bu/acre.

The province says insect pressure remains low in most canola, except in the Interlake and Swan Valley, where lygus bug populations have exceeded economic thresholds and require spraying. 

Late-season adult flea beetles are increasing in number.