Crop development

The interactive tool at the bottom of this page helps show the condition and growth stages of different crops across GB. The chart is split into regions and uses colours to show different conditions. You can also use the bottom chart to see growth stages of cereals or oilseeds.

Overview

This is the first crop condition report for the 2021/22 growing season. It summarises the condition of major GB cereal and oilseeds crops as of the end of November 2021.

The weather was kinder this autumn compared with previous years. Mild, dry and settled conditions for most allowed farmers to focus on planned winter cropping. Clement weather allowed for good spraying and drilling conditions across the whole of the UK. All of this in total has resulted in good crop establishment to the end of November.

The below table illustrates the condition score for major cereals and oilseeds crops, as at the end of November 2021.

Crop condition results as of November 2021

Regional results and growth stages

Don't forget to scroll down the page to use our interactive dashboard to review regional crop condition results and crop growth stages.

Crop condition definitions

Crop condition was assessed using the USDA approach. This classifies crops into one of five categories, from very poor through to excellent (see details below). The values are given as the percentage of the GB crop area for that crop that falls in each of the categories – regional condition scores are available on the crop reporting dashboard at the bottom of this page.

  • Very Poor - Extreme degree of loss to yield potential, complete or near crop failure.
  • Poor - Heavy degree of loss to yield potential, which can be caused by excess soil moisture, drought, disease, etc.
  • Fair - Less than normal crop condition. Yield loss is a possibility, but the extent is unknown.
  • Good - Yield prospects are normal. Moisture levels are adequate and disease, insect damage, and weed pressures are minor.
  • Excellent - Yield prospects are above normal. Crops are experiencing little or no stress. Disease, insect damage, and weed pressures are insignificant.

Wheat

Winter

As at the end of November, 84% of the winter wheat crop was in good-excellent condition. This is versus 57% last season. Only 4% of the crop was stated to be in poor-very poor condition.

Winter wheat drilling was almost complete by the end of November. In September, 27% of winter wheat was drilled, a further 62% in October and 10% in November. The Eastern region has reportedly increased its winter wheat area and the West Midlands is said to have increased the crop area, but will be sowing less spring barley. Crop establishment was very good overall, due to the favourable weather conditions. Indeed, some forward wheats already have 3-4 tillers.

Winter wheat crop condition results as of November 2021

Barley

Winter

As at the end of November, 90% of winter barley was in a good-excellent condition, with only 2% poor-very poor. This is some 32 percentage points up on November 2020, when just 58% of the crop was in good-excellent condition.

Drilling was completed in a timely manner, with 57% planted in September, 43% in October and the final 1% in November. As with winter wheat, settled conditions allowed good progress to be made. Crops are, to date, well established and hybrid varieties are said to be looking very forward. Indeed, 85% of the national crop is now at tillering stage.

Winter barley crop condition results as of November 2021

Oats

By the end of November, 79% of winter oats were in good-excellent condition, versus 68% the year before. Drilling of the crop is almost complete, with 38% planted in September, 57% in October and 4% in November. Drilling conditions have been excellent and good emergence recorded.

Some regions have reported a reduced area of oats this season.

Winter oats crop condition results as of November 2021

Oilseed Rape

Winter

Oilseed rape (OSR) crops are 78% good-excellent at the end of November, about the same as year earlier conditions (77%). Good establishment has been achieved across many regions, although a small proportion have failed due to the dry September. This has been reported on August sown crops in the East Midlands, and have now been replaced with winter wheat or beans.

During August, 76% of the crop was drilled, the remaining 24% in September. Favourable conditions throughout October and November have allowed for good growth, resulting in crops with fair canopies and leaf cover. In the West Midlands, PGR’s (plant growth regulators) might be used where canopies are too large.

Winter oilseed rape crop condition results as of November 2021


Download the latest crop development report




How to use the dashboard

  • Use the drop down menu at the top of the first chart to view the crop conditions of a particular crop in each region.

  • Use the drop down menus at the top of the second chart to view the percentage of a crop at each growth stage. The drop down menus can also be used to show the information for a particular region.

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