According to the latest visual observations, the top 10-cm layer of soil is moderately moist in most of Belarus. The average soil temperature at a 10-cm depth is +8-13 degrees C, while the soil warmed to +15 C in the south. Productive moisture content in the topsoil is close to optimum in the majority of fields. The agrometeorological situation is favorable for fieldwork, including planting of cereals and pulses, in most areas. Farmers are starting to sow corn in southernmost parts of the country.
However, some weather stations report that the top layer of light soils is too dry because of a long precipitation deficit – this worsens conditions for tillage, germination and emergence of spring crops. Rainfalls expected to occur this week will replenish soil moisture content.
The vast majority of winter cereals are in good condition. Winter rape showed poorer survival this year. According to field surveys, 9% of its crops are in poor condition or lost in Brest region, 11% in Minsk region, and 16% in Gomel region.
Spring fieldwork progress in Belarus is still behind last year. 809.3 thousand ha was seeded to early spring cereals and pulses (79.4% of the plan) against 841.6 thousand ha at the same time in 2017 (89.7%). 46.8 thousand ha had been sown to grain corn (29.1% of the plan) compared to 45.2 thousand ha as of the same date in 2017 (38.9%). (UkrAgroConsult/Business World Magazine)