Peanuts Crop Evolution Report
After the abundant rains received during the end of October and the first half of November, the peanut area is facing excellent environmental conditions to carry out planting tasks. The available water content in the soil is above 50%, which means that drought issues were left behind. In these circumstances, we are moving forward with the crop plantings at an accelerated pace. Once the adequate environmental conditions were met, farmers from all areas decided to increase the work capacity and, in many cases, to plant 24 hours a day, in order to finish the plantings tasks within the optimum date window (Oct 20th – Nov 25th). As of today, our estimate of planting progress is 78% of the total projected area. The remaining 22% of the projected area is expected to take place within the next 10 days, at most.
Image 1: Planting progress as of November 12th, 2018
Zooming into the area that was already planted, the situation is as follows:
• 60% is in the process of germination.
• 30% is in early emergency.
• 10% is in implementation period.
Image 2: Plantings at full swing in the Central area.
During October, abundant rainfall was recorded throughout all the peanut regions of Argentina, mainly towards the second half of the month. Rains were very well received by the farmers, who are now totally devoted to the sowing tasks. However, records were variable in the different areas of our map of reference.
Image 3: Map division of the peanut area.
Towards the Western Area, rains were less important, but sufficient to recharge the soil moisture profiles. However, the area was affected by heavy rains and abundant hail in short periods of time, causing cracks in the ground, mainly due to the lack of a cover crop. In the Northern, Central and Southern areas, rainfall was abundant and homogeneous. Below is a map that illustrates the rainfall that occurred in Cordoba throughout October.
Image 4: Accumulated precipitation during October 2018, in the province of Cordoba.
By the first week of November, abundant rainfall was recorded in the Northwest of the Department of Rio Cuarto, while the lowest records were in the Southwest region. In the Central-Eastern Zone, records were close to those of the Department of Rio Cuarto. Finally, in the Northern area, rains brought relief to the farmers, since this area was suffering from a water deficit. The rainfall records during the first week of November were as follows:
Image 5: Accumulated precipitation during the 1st week of November 2018, in the province of Cordoba.
Available Water Content in Argentina
As of today, available water content in Argentina ranks between 40% and 50%. These figures imply that the soils are in a “field condition”, which means that the extraction of water by the plants occurs without any difficulty. The values increased remarkably in the Northwest area of the Buenos Aires province.
Image 6: Available water content in Argentina as of November 5th, 2018. Source: FAUBA.
In October, temperatures were below the historical average. During the first two weeks of October, the minimum temperatures hovered around 10°C, while the maximum temperatures were between 22°C and 25°C. These low records discouraged plantings, as farmers had to wait until soil and environmental temperatures reached optimum values. Proper conditions are key for the plants to achieve successful germination and emergence. By the third week of October, temperatures dropped to normal levels (minimum temperatures at 17°C), which created the desired moisture and temperature conditions. During November, the thermal records were more stable and within the averages of the decade. The minimum temperatures hovered around 17°C, while the maximum temperatures were between 25°C and 29°C. Source: National Institute of Climate and Water.
Extended Forecast Trends
The long-term trend points out to a neutral year from April 2019 onwards, which would be ideal to achieve optimal results in the digging and harvesting stages.
Image 7: Extended Weather Forecast.
At the time of this report, we are sowing at a constant and accelerated pace in most areas, except for some specific and minor exceptions. In the Southern area, more precisely in the province of La Pampa and northeast of Buenos Aires, plantings began around October 20th while, in the rest of the areas, plantings started around October 25th, due to the fact that the right conditions were reached later, as mentioned before. We consider that plantings will be completely carried out within the optimum peanut sowing window. The average sowing density is 14 seeds per meter, at a distance between rows of 70 cm, achieving an average per hectare of 185,000 germinated plants.
Image 8: Verfication of the number of seeds per meter.
Image 9: Control of germinated seeds.
On the other hand, treatments with herbicides (pre-emergent) to control resistant weeds continued in all the areas of interest.
In the previous report, an issue related to the quality of the peanut seed (low germination power and germination energy) was reported. Today, considering that the sowing took place under optimal soil conditions (temperature and humidity), it was not necessary to increase the density of seeds per meter, which was one of the options under consideration. Germination efficiency is currently above 80% in the area already planted.
Image 10: Emergence of peanut plants.
We are facing a promissory beginning of a new peanut crop in Argentina, given that the current conditions favor a rapid and constant progress in planting tasks. After a few years of meager results, the Argentine peanut cluster is in desperate need of a good crop to offset all the complications. We estimate that the rest of spring and summer months will bring normal rains, in line with the historical averages. Although the planted area in Argentina was reportedly reduced (15% reductions according to CAM), good yields could play a key role in the recovery of the industry. However, considering that the season has just begun, our expectations should be taken with a good deal of precaution. The previous seasons, in which the problems arose by January, are still fresh in the minds of the people involved in the peanut industry.
Image 11: Farmers at full swing to finish plantings within the optimal dates.