This year's corn crop is maturing well ahead of normal according to USDA Meteorologist Brad Rippey.
"We see that more than two-thirds of the U.S. corn crop is fully matured as of Sept. 19," Rippey said. "At 69%, well ahead of the five-year average of 48% and even more so ahead of last year's number of just 20% at this time."
Rippey says 18% of the nation's crop has been completely harvested, which is well ahead of the five-year average of 10% and the final corn crop condition numbers of the season shows 68% of the corn at good-to-excellent the same as a week ago and incidentally the same as was seen a year ago. He says the 2010 crop is shaping up to be similar to 2009, just developing a lot faster.
Soybean crop reports also show a faster paced development than last year.
"We now see 60% of the nation's crop dropping leaves," Rippey said. "That's ahead of the five-year average of 52% and last year's number of 36%"
Also ahead of pace is the harvest of the crop which is 8% complete, slightly ahead of the five-year average of 6% and well ahead of last year's 2%. Mississippi and Louisiana are leading the way with 55% of their crop harvested.
"Soybean condition; we still have a couple more weeks of this," Rippey said. "Sixty-three percent good-to-excellent, that's the same as a week ago and slightly below last year's number of 67% good-to-excellent in mid-September."