Rainfall Helps Crops As Corn, Soybean Harvesting Begins
By George Ford, Reporter
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - The condition of Iowa's corn and soybean crops improved slightly over the last week as a good portion of the state received some frequent rainfall.
Corn condition improved to 9 percent very poor, 18 percent poor, 36 percent fair, 32 percent good and 5 percent excellent, according to the weekly U.S. Department of Agriculture crops and weather report.
Soybean condition also improved to 10 percent very poor, 19 percent poor, 37 percent fair, 30 percent good and 4 percent excellent.
Topsoil moisture levels were rated 36 percent very short, 41 percent short, 23 percent adequate and zero percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels were rated 41 percent very short, 40 percent short, 19 percent adequate and zero percent surplus.
"The widespread rain received last week was very welcome after the extremely dry weather in August and the first half of September," said Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey. "Harvest is just getting started and will likely become more widespread this week and next."
Areas of central and east central Iowa experienced wind damage from Thursday evening’s storm. The heaviest rain came in a band from about Glenwood to Des Moines to Dubuque.
High winds with some hail were reported with the storms in 19 counties from southwest into east central Iowa.
"Rain totals for the week varied from only sprinkles at Le Mars, Orange City and Rock Valley in northwest Iowa to 4.85 inches near Hastings in Mills County and 4.33 inches at Monticello," said State Climatologist Harry Hillaker. "This was the wettest week in 12 weeks with Thursday being the wettest day since June 24."
With almost the entire corn crop in or past the dough stage, 89 percent of the crop was dented, 6 percentage points behind normal. Thirty-five percent of corn was mature, well behind the normal 61 percent.
Sixty-nine percent of soybeans had turned color, 20 percentage points behind normal. Twenty-two percent of the crop had dropped leaves, 10 days behind normal pace.
The USDA said there were scattered reports of the early planted soybeans being harvested.
The harvest of third cutting alfalfa was 96 percent complete, slightly ahead of the normal 93 percent. Pasture condition improved and was rated 32 percent very poor, 30 percent poor, 27 percent fair, 10 percent good and 1 percent excellent.
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