Eastern Corn Belt Catching Up on Planting

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Favorable weather last week allowed producers in the soggy eastern Corn Belt to catch up considerably on corn and soybean planting and also boosted corn conditions.

USDA pegged U.S. corn planting at 94% complete, up from 86% a week earlier, with Ohio producers planting 39% of their crop to push overall progress in that state to 58% versus only 19% a week earlier. Ohio planting progress still lagged the five-year average by 41 percentage points.

U.S. soybean producers had planted 68% of their crop by Sunday, up 17 percentage points from a week earlier, but still about a week behind the five-year average pace of 82%.

Soybean planting remains well behind in the eastern Corn Belt with Ohio producers having seeded only 26% of their crop as of Sunday against a five-year average of 88% and Indiana producers 49% planted against an average of 77%.

Some 79% of the U.S. corn crop had emerged by Sunday, up from 66% a week earlier, but behind the five-year average of 90%, while 44% of the soybean crop had emerged, up from 27% a week earlier, but well behind the average pace of 61%.

Crop emergence is well behind in the eastern Corn Belt due to the slow pace of planting there and also lags badly in northern growing states such as North Dakota and Wisconsin.

USDA’s rating of corn conditions improved to 67% good/excellent from 63% the previous week, but that was still down from 76% a year earlier.

Crops in the top corn and soybean state of Iowa are off to a good start. Iowa corn conditions were rated 81% good/excellent as of Sunday, up from 80% a week earlier with 96% of the crop emerged. The year’s first estimate of soybean conditions in Iowa showed 79% of the crop rated good to excellent with 78% emerged ahead of the five-year average of 74%.

In the No. 2 corn state of Illinois, corn conditions were rated 66% good/excellent, unchanged from a week earlier with 90% of the crop emerged. The average height of Illinois corn was put at 9 in. compared with 16 in. last year and the five-year average of 12.

The Illinois office of the National Statistic Service noted that standing water remained a problem in some areas with fields drying slowly in spite of hot weather. Some seedling disease was noted in locations that received excessive rainfall.

 

Editor’s note: Richard Brock, Corn & Soybean Digest's marketing editor, is president of Brock Associates, a farm market advisory firm, and publisher of The Brock Report.

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