The harvest of winter wheat is ongoing. In early October, sowing of maize and rice in central-southern Brazil, as well as of soybean started . Overall crop conditions were average as compared to the previous five years.
(a) Phenology of major crops
Agro-climatic indicators at the national level present slightly below average conditions with rainfall 5% below average, temperature 0.1℃ above and radiation up by 2%. The potential BIOMSS by integration of rainfall, temperature and PAR was 5% above 15YA. The current monitoring period is the dry season in Brazil and the total amount of rainfall during the four months (July to October) was just 275 mm, nationwide. According to the seasonal rainfall profile, no single decade had any significant rainfall departure from 15YA. However, most of the major agricultural states in the country presented below average rainfall except for Mato Grosso (13% above 15YA) and Minas Gerais (average). Mato Grosso Do Sul, Parana, Santa Catarina and Sao Paulo suffered from water shortage since the rainfall was 28% or more below average. Most of the States presented slightly above average temperatures except for Ceara and Rio Grande Do Sul where TEMP was 0.1°C and 0.3°C degree lower than average, respectively. The seasonal TEMP profile presents overall average values except from late August to early September, when the temperature exceeded average by more than 1.0°C. All the nine major agricultural States recorded above average radiation, ranging from +1% in Ceara to +7% in Parana. Large positive departure of BIOMSS from 15YA was observed in Ceara (+10%), Goias (19%), Parana (+20%), Santa Catarina (+8%) and Sao Paulo (+17%). Biomass was close to average in other major agricultural States.
(a) Brazil crop condition development graph based on NDVI (a) and rainfall profiles (b)
(c) Time series rainfall profile of temperature and PAR
The national NDVI development profile for Brazil presents slightly below average starting in July. Since the current period covers the harvest of winter crops and sowing of summer crops, the slightly below average reflects the advanced harvesting and slightly slow development of summer crops at the early stage. When crop condition is classified into five categories (figure g), proportion of above/slightly above average conditions increased from July to October. The VCIx map shows high values (>0.8) in most regions except for scattered farmland in the Mato Grosso and Parana river basins. Nationally, the average VCIx was 0.84. The spatial and temporal pattern of NDVI departures presents similar situations: About 10.6% of arable land areas with average NDVI is scattered across the country. Below average conditions were mostly located at Mato Grosso Do Sul, Parana, and western Sao Paulo. Crops in Rio Grande Do Sul, which is the top wheat producing State, as well as northern and north-eastern Brazil were generally at average level throughout the monitoring period. Average wheat production is projected by CropWatch considering the overall favorable agro-climatic conditions during the key growing stages. CALF indicates that 93 % of the farmland was cultivated, which is at above average. Cropping intensity for 2019 is 134%, 8% above average.
(f) Spatial NDVI patterns compared to 5YA (left) and the corresponding NDVI departure profiles (right)
(g) Proportion of NDVI anomaly categories compared with 5YA from July to October, 2019
Note: the categories were determined based on the NDVI departures from average: Above average >0.125; Slightly above average >0.075 to 0.125; Average: >-0.075 to 0.075; >-0.125 to -0.075; Below Average: up to -0.125. The numbers on X-axis are the Julian day of the year and the bar indicates the proportion of different crop condition categories over the 16 days starting from the julian date below the bar.
Based on cropping systems, climatic zones, and topographic conditions, eight agro-ecological regions (AEZs) are identified for Brazil. They include the Amazonas, Central Savanna, Coast, North-eastern mixed forest and farmland, Mato Grosso, Nordeste, Parana basin and Southern subtropical range-lands.
Over the current reporting period, although nationwide rainfall was close to average, large differences occurred among AEZs. All eight AEZs in Brazil recorded large departures of rainfall ranging from 28% below average in Parana basin to 21% above average in Mato Grosso. In contrast to rainfall, TEMP and PAR departures were similar across AEZs, with close to average and slightly above average PAR (+1% to +3%) for all AEZs. The Southern Subtropical range-lands received 3% above average PAR in contrast with the below average radiation in previous monitoring periods (JFMA & AMJJ). The Central Savanna received 16% lower rainfall which resulted in a 4% drop of BIOMSS. Although rainfall in Southern subtropical range-lands was at 663 mm and 11% above average, low temperature hampered the development of the crops. As a result, BIOMSS was 8% below 15YA while most of other zones presented above average BIOMSS.
(h) Crop condition development graph based on NDVI for Amazonas (left) and Central Savanna (right)
(i) Crop condition development graph based on NDVI for Coast (left) and Northeastern mixed forest and farmland (right)
(j) Crop condition development graph based on NDVI for Mato Grosso (left) and Nordeste (right)
(k) Crop condition development graph based on NDVI for Parana River (left) and Southern subtropical range-lands (right)
As reflected by the regional NDVI profiles, Central Savanna and Nordeste presented generally above average crop condition thanks to the overall favorable agro-climatic conditions. The seasonal NDVI profile was above 5YA and the previous year throughout the monitoring period in the Central Savanna and Nordeste as it benefited from more favorable conditions than during the previous period (AMJJ). Accordingly, the cropped arable land fraction (CALF) in the two regions was also significantly above average (+16% and +13%, respectively). The NDVI peaks of southern subtropical range-lands exceeded both 5YA and optimal condition of the past five years indicating favorable prospects for wheat output. Crop condition was average in the Coast and North-eastern mixed forest and farmland AEZs thanks to favorable rainfall.
Although Amazonas and Mato Grosso received above average rainfall from July to October, the adverse climatic condition from April to July (rainy season and the major growing season) hampered the crop development, resulting in below average crop conditions. CALF was close to 100% in Amazonas, Coast, North-eastern mixed forest and farmland, and Southern subtropical range-lands, indicating high intensity of cropland utilization. Below average CALF compared to 5YA was observed in Mato Grosso and the Parana basin. VCIx for each zone was larger than 0.85 except for Mato Grosso and Parana basin where average VCIx was at 0.79 and 0.80, respectively, the lowest values among the zones. Cropping Intensity at AEZs level ranged from 122% in Central Savanna to 159% in Amazonas. All AEZs presented above average levels except for the Mato Grosso at 1% below 5YA.
Table xx Brazil agro-climatic indicators by sub-national regions, current season's values and departure from 15YA, July to October 2019
|Current (mm)||Departure from 15YA (%)||Current (°C)||Departure from 15YA (°C)||Current (MJ/m2)||Departure from 15YA (%)||Current (gDM/m2)||Departure from 15YA (%)|
|Northeastern mixed forest and farmland||214||11||27.1||0.0||1286||2||762||5|
|Southern subtropical range-lands||663||11||14.7||-0.4||854||3||314||-8|
Table xx Brazil agronomic indicators by sub-national regions, current season's values and departures, July to October 2019
|Region||Cropped arable land fraction||Cropping Intensity||Maximum VCI|
|Current (%)||Departure from 5YA (%)||Current (%)||Departure from 5YA (%)||Current|
|Northeastern mixed forest and farmland||99||0||157||10||0.95|
|Southern subtropical range-lands||98||1||133||5||0.93|