Iowa Corn, Soybean Planting Ahead of Averages

By George C. Ford, The Gazette

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - With Mother Nature cooperating, Iowa farmers were able to make substantial progress toward planting this year’s corn and soybean crops in the week that ended on Sunday.

Warm temperatures and below normal precipitation allowed producers to complete planting 96 percent of the expected corn acreage, 13 percent ahead of last year and 1 percent more than average, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Corn emergence reached 67 percent, six days in front of last year but four days behind normal.

Soybean planting progress doubled to 80 percent complete, which is 5 percent above average. For the first time this season, both corn and soybean acreage planted were above the five year average.

Topsoil moistures decreased slightly with the below normal rainfall. Topsoil moisture levels were rated 2 percent very short, 14 percent short, 77 percent adequate and 7 percent surplus.

Subsoil moisture levels were rated 7 percent very short, 25 percent short, 63 percent adequate and 5 percent surplus.

Ninety-three percent of the oat acreage has emerged, ahead of last year’s 89 percent, but 3 percent behind average. Oat condition was rated zero percent very poor, 2 percent poor, 41 percent fair, 49 percent good and 8 percent excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay was 7 percent complete, ahead of last year’s zero percent but 12 points less than average. Hay condition was rated zero percent very poor, 3 percent poor, 34 percent fair, 49 percent good and 14 percent excellent.

Pasture condition was rated 5 percent very poor, 9 percent poor, 32 percent fair, 42 percent good and 12 percent excellent.

Livestock conditions were reported as favorable.

Statewide there were 5.3 days suitable for fieldwork in the most recent week. Other activities included spraying, herbicide application, and some rotary hoeing to break up crusted fields.

l Comments: (319) 398-8366; george.ford@sourcemedia.net

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