The 2010 HRW wheat harvest and evaluation of samples is complete. The 2010 hard red winter (HRW) wheat crop began with generally favorable planting conditions in all regions. All states had good planting conditions with emergence ratings very close to the 5 year average throughout the fall of 2009. This was particularly true in the southern plains (Texas and Oklahoma) where emergence and tillering (stem development) provided rapid ground cover and good root development at the surface. The result of these excellent conditions was timely planting, emergence and development of the crop in all production areas going into the winter months. The favorable conditions continued in the spring with wide-spread (fair to excellent) crop condition ratings of over 90 % in all areas by early April and continued until harvest. These very good growing conditions (cool with good moisture) tended to be a hindrance to crop maturity. Reports from northeast Colorado, the Nebraska Panhandle and Montana indicated an average harvest date from 2 to 3 weeks behind normal. The overall growing conditions proved to be a blessing and a curse for the 2010 crop. The cool and damp weather during grainfill was a major factor, resulting in significantly higher than normal test weights, kernel size and mill yield for most areas. However, those same conditions were not conducive to accumulation of protein in grain.
Seventy-one percent of all individual samples graded US #1 and ninety-two percent of all individual samples grading US # 2 or better. An average test weight of 61 lbs/ bu. (80.2 kg/hl) is above the five-year average and is higher than the 2009 average. The average thousand kernel weight of 29.9 g is above the 5-year average of 29.5 g, but slightly lower than the 2009 average of 30.1 g. However, while all kernel characteristics were very good, average protein (wheat and flour) was lower than the 5-year average and this was reflected in the dough and bake performance test.