Crop conditions move slowly

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Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Crops across Iowa are progressing slowly according to the Iowa Crop Progress Report.

Seventy-six percent of the corn crop is at or past the dent stage, three days behind the five-year average, and 15 percent of corn is at maturity, eight days behind the average. Corn conditions are down slightly to 60 percent good or excellent.

Forty-seven percent of soybeans are turning color, a day behind the average, while eight percent of soybeans are dropping leaves, four days behind average. Bean conditions are at 61 percent good to excellent.

State Climatologist Harry Hillaker says the weather has been abnormally dry, especially the last few weeks.

The Iowa crop report says topsoil moisture is rated 49 percent short to very short and subsoil moisture is at 53 percent short to very short.

Hillaker says there are pros and cons to the dryness, "Good news as far as getting the corn crop to dry down and things of that nature, but bad as far as maybe fill in the bean pods and things like that might still benefit from a rain and also bad from getting cover crops planted or germinated with very, very dry topsoil."

Hillaker says there a big forecast change from what weather models predicted months ago. A La Niña weather event is now more likely than an El Niño, which would mean a cooler, wetter winter for Iowa.