Iowa Crop Progress and Conditions Report

Week of May 11-17, 2020

DES MOINES, Iowa (May 18, 2020) – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Late last week, a portion of Iowa was deemed ‘abnormally dry’ by the U.S. Drought Monitor. Much of the state experienced cooler temperatures and rain over the weekend, which helped mitigate dryness concerns and impacts on emerging corn and soybeans,” said Secretary Naig. “With the recent rainfall, and temperatures that are expected to warm up throughout the week, crops should get a boost in the field.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s site at

Crop Progress

There were 4.3 days suitable for field work during the week ending May 17, 2020, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Windy days made spraying weeds difficult, but planting continued prior to most of Iowa receiving rain in the latter half of the week.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 2% very short, 7% short, 78% adequate and 13% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 1% very short, 6% short, 83% adequate and 10% surplus.

Iowa farmers have planted 96% of the expected corn crop, nearly a month ahead of last year and almost 3 weeks ahead of the 5-year average. Only Southwest Iowa has over 10% remaining to be planted. Corn emergence improved to 62%, almost double that of the previous week. The soybean crop moved to 86% planted, also nearly a month ahead of last year and 3 weeks ahead of average. Farmers in the northern one-third of the State have less than 10% of their soybeans left to plant. One-fourth of the soybean crop has emerged. Seeding of the oat crop is virtually complete, with 91% emerged. Oat condition rated 80% good to excellent.

Hay condition rated 71% good to excellent. Pasture condition rated 62% good to excellent. Warmer temperatures would help improve growth in pastures and hay fields. Livestock conditions continue to be good with little to no stress reported.