The latest report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows more dry weather led to corn planting being virtually completed last week with 99-percent of corn in the ground. Ninety-six percent of the soybean crop has been planted — about two weeks behind what it normally takes to reach that mark.
The corn is three weeks behind normal for the amount that has emerged from the ground, while the soybean crop is 8-percent behind normal, with 89-percent now out of the ground.
In north-central Iowa, Iowa State University extension agronomist, Paul Kassel of Spencer, surveyed the crops. He says persistent rains in the region have prevented planting many fields.
“It’s kind of guess when I say this, but I’d say maybe ten-percent of the corn. They were some of the larger acre operators that were not able to get much planted,” Kassel says.”You can drive east of Algona and on both sides of the road there’s a couple stretches there’s no crop planted. I’ve seen seen similar things near the little town of Rodman and near the town of Mallard on both sides of the road, there’s no crop planted.”
Kassel covers a 10-county area of west and north-central Iowa from Sac City and Spencer to Garner. He says that region’s corn and soybean crop’s vary widely. “There’s of some of that that’s very good. I’d say it’s behind a little bit. As you go east, I’d would say it’s pretty fair to poor ‘cause we have a lot of late planted corn — maybe May 23rd-24th, a lot of prevented planting on corn, so those fields are basically, they’ve not seen a tractor this year,” Kassel says. He says the corn and soybeans that made it into the ground are struggling to grow.
“A lot of soybeans just planted, so they’re just coming up. And both crops, anything that was planted that date of May 23rd 24th, a lot of replanting on both of those crops. So a lot of my area, that stuff does not look good at all,” Kassel says. Ironically, Kassel adds that the corn and soybean fields in west central Iowa where crop conditions are better would benefit from rain.
Statewide the U.S.D.A. report shows 14-percent of the corn in poor or very poor condition, while 29-percent is in fair condition, 44-percent in good and only 13-percent in excellent. As for soybeans, 12-percent were in very poor or poor condition, with 32-percent in fair conditions, 45-percent rated good and 11-percent rated excellent.