Winter wheat acres have been down across the Prairies in recent years.

That was the message from the Western Winter Wheat Initiative, who hosted a pair of grower events last week in Brandon and at Richardson's Kelburn Farm south of Winnipeg.

Ken Gross, agrologist with Ducks Unlimited, says acres in Manitoba topped out at about 600,000 a few years ago, due to some wet planting conditions in the fall.

He says there was under 200,000 acres planted in Manitoba this year, noting the crop that was seeded was looking pretty good.

ken grossKen Gross

"Last fall it went into the winter looking really good, best I've seen in a number of years," commented Gross. "It all looked like it was about that three-leaf stage. You get a nice thick crown full of energy so it can take it through all of stresses and pop out of the ground in the spring."

Gross is advising that producers apply nitrogen as soon as possible, to give the crop an extra yield bump.

He notes that winter wheat is one of the most profitable crops to grow, which is why they are trying to promote it.

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