Durum wheat seedings in Arizona and California for 2009 harvest are estimated at 270,000 acres, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service. This is down 16 percent from 2008. Planting is ongoing in California's San Joaquin and Imperial Valleys plus in western Arizona.

Planted acreage is down 40,000 in Arizona and down 10,000 in California. No major problems with the crop have been reported. Arizona durum wheat seedings for 2009 are estimated at 110,000 acres. Other wheat seedings at 7,000 acres are down 6,000 acres from last year.

The U.S. winter wheat planted area for harvest in 2009 is estimated at 42.1 million acres, down 9 percent from last year. Seeding began last August behind the 5-year average pace and remained behind until mid-November due to wet weather and delayed row crop harvest.

Nearly all of the U.S. acreage was seeded by Dec. 1 except in some intended acres in the Southeast and California. The winter wheat crop condition at the end of November was rated 65 percent good to excellent compared with 44 percent the previous year.