Written by Theresa Rose
Tuesday, 24 May 2011
Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey today commented on the Iowa Crops and Weather report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service. The report is released weekly from April through October.
“Between showers farmers have been able to make significant planting progress the last three weeks and moved ahead of the five year average for both corn and soybean planting,” Northey said.
The weekly report is also available on the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship’s website at www.IowaAgriculture.gov or on USDA’s site at www.nass.usda.gov/ia. The report follows here:
PLANTING PROGRESS SURPASSES 2010
In spite of part of the State having less than 3 days suitable for fieldwork, corn and soybean planting progress managed to meet or surpass the quick pace of 2010. Farmers would appreciate some dry, warm weather to help speed emergence, although good stands are reported where crops have emerged. Most of the week’s rain was not heavy; however, areas in central, east central, and southwest Iowa reported receiving hail during the week and tornadoes were reported in six Iowa counties on Sunday.
There were 4.2 days suitable for fieldwork statewide during the past week. East central Iowa led the way with 5.4 days suitable while south central Iowa had only 2.1 days suitable. Topsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 79 percent adequate, and 20 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 81 percent adequate, and 18 percent surplus.
Ninety-eight percent of Iowa’s corn acreage has been planted, equal to last year but ahead of the five-year average of 94 percent. Only south central Iowa has more than 5 percent of their corn crop remaining to be planted. Seventy-four percent of the State’s corn crop has emerged, behind last year’s 81 percent, but ahead of the average 67 percent. Soybean planting is 78 percent complete, ahead of last year’s 72 percent and the normal pace of 68 percent. South Central is the only district with over half their soybean acreage remaining to be planted. Twenty-one percent of the State’s soybean crop has emerged, behind last year’s 25 percent but slightly ahead of the five-year average of 19 percent. A few scattered fields of oats remain to be planted and 98 percent of the oat acreage has emerged. Oat condition rated 0 percent very poor, 2 percent poor, 18 percent fair, 66 percent good, and 14 percent excellent.
Pasture and range condition improved to 1 percent very poor, 6 percent poor, 26 percent fair, 50 percent good, and 17 percent excellent. In spite of additional rain across the State, no reports of excessively muddy feedlots were received and livestock conditions remain favorable.
IOWA PRELIMINARY WEATHER SUMMARY
By Harry Hillaker, State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship
The past reporting week began with cool and dry weather with high temperatures mostly in the 60’s on Monday (16th), Tuesday (17th) and Wednesday (18th). A light freeze was recorded at a few scattered eastern Iowa locations on Monday (16th) morning. Showers and thunderstorms were widespread from Thursday (19th) evening through Saturday (21st) morning. There was a brief break in the rain Saturday before storms redeveloped Saturday evening and continued into Sunday morning. A few of the Saturday evening storms brought high winds and large hail to parts of western and southwestern Iowa. Strong thunderstorms developed over portions of eastern Iowa on Sunday afternoon and evening with severe storms reported in 18 counties. Rain totals of one to two inches were common for the week over the western two-thirds of the state while totals were much lower over parts of far eastern Iowa. Weekly totals varied from only 0.14 inches at Cascade to 3.45 inches at Estherville. The statewide average precipitation was 1.16 inches or a little more than the weekly normal of 0.97 inches. Meanwhile, temperatures climbed above normal over the weekend with highs climbing into the 80’s over much of southern and eastern Iowa. Temperature extremes for the week ranged from Monday (16th) morning lows of 30 degrees at Lowden and Manchester to Sunday (22nd) afternoon highs of 86 degrees at Burlington and Keosauqua. Temperatures for the week as a whole averaged 1.2 degrees below normal. Soil temperatures as of Sunday were averaging in the lower 60’s statewide.