USDA Shows Iowa Farmers Now Have 71% Of Corn Planted

USDA Shows Iowa Farmers Now Have 71% Of Corn Planted

According to USDA survey, normally 92% of state's corn acreage would be done by now, as wet weather still has Iowa running behind schedule.

Taking full advantage of the five days of good weather last week, Iowa farmers kept their planters rolling across the fields—by day and by night. Iowa had 71% of its 2013 corn acreage planted as of May 19, according to the weekly survey released May 20 by USDA's National Ag Statistics Service. "Iowa corn acreage jumped from 15% planted to 71% planted in a week," says Greg Thessen, director of the USDA/NASS Iowa office in Des Moines. "That's a 56 percentage point increase, but it's still behind the normal of 92% planted for this date, thanks to the very wet spring of 2013."

PLAYING CATCH-UP FAST: USDA's weekly survey shows Iowa farmers were able to plant more than 9 million acres of corn last week, as 71% of Iowa's 2013 corn crop was in the ground as of May 19. That's a big jump from only 15% of the state's corn planted as of May 12—but it's still behind normal thanks to a continued wet spring. The 5-year average shows 92% of Iowa's corn would usually be planted by now.

The survey shows for the week ending May 19 there were five days suitable for fieldwork. However, farmers were able to plant more than 9 million acres of the 23 million acres of Iowa that will be devoted to corn and soybeans this year. While planting progress remains behind the 5-year average, hopefully dryer weather will return soon to allow farmers to finish getting crops in the ground.

Nationwide, the survey as of May 19 shows 71% of the 2013 U.S. corn crop was planted--compared to a normal of 79% by that same date based on the average of the last 5 years. A week earlier, on May 12, only 28% of this year's U.S. corn crop was planted. In addition to Iowa's jump from 15% to 71% planted in a week, Illinois also showed a hefty increase in corn acreage planted—going from 17% on May 12 to 74% as of May 19. Indiana went from 30% to 64%. Nebraska increased from 43% to 84%.

The weekly Iowa Crops & Weather report is available in full on the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship's website or on USDA's site. The report summary follows here:

Iowa corn planting is 71% complete as of May 19, and 13% of the it is emerged

CROP REPORT: Iowa farmers made significant progress planting crops during the week ending May 19, 2013 according to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service. The best weather of year for fieldwork allowed farmers to rapidly advance their planting pace, especially for corn. The good weather held in most areas till late in the week, when severe storms rumbled across much of Iowa. There was an average of 5.3 days suitable for fieldwork during the week, over twice the days suitable for fieldwork in any previous week this year.~~~PAGE_BREAK_HERE~~~

Topsoil moisture levels rated zero percent very short, 3% short, 71% adequate and 26% surplus as of May 19. Statewide, subsoil moisture levels rated 2% very short, 13% short, 72% adequate and 13% surplus--although ratings in Northwest Iowa still show nearly 30% in the short to very short categories.

By the end of the week--as of May 19--the survey shows 71% of Iowa's corn acreage had been planted, an increase of 56 percentage points from the previous week—the week ending May 12. Even though farmers planted at a near record pace, progress still lags behind last year's 97% and the 5-year average of 92% for this date. Looking at emergence, 13% of the corn crop has emerged, well behind last year's 77% and the normal of 58%.

Soybean planting in Iowa is 16% complete as of May 19--lagging last year's 78% and the 5-year average of 59%

Soybean planting in Iowa is 16% complete as of May 19, 2013, which is running behind last year's 78% and the 5-year average of 59%. Only 1% of the state's soybean crop has emerged. Oat planting, at 98%, is nearly complete and 71% of the oat crop has emerged. Oat condition is rated zero percent very poor, 3% poor, 30% fair, 61% good and 6% excellent.

Pasture and range conditions continue to show improvement and are rated 3% very poor, 10% poor, 33% fair, 45% good and 9% excellent. Hay supplies are still tight across Iowa.

IOWA PRELIMINARY WEATHER SUMMARY—for week ending May 19, 2013

By Harry Hillaker, State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship

Iowa received a welcome break from the recent wet weather with mostly dry weather prevailing from Sunday (May 12) through Wednesday (May 15). However, far southeast Iowa saw some light rain Wednesday night while rain was scattered over much of the state Thursday afternoon to Friday morning. Locally heavy rain fell across portions of extreme northern Iowa Thursday night May 16. Dry weather again prevailed through most of the day on Friday and through Saturday.~~~PAGE_BREAK_HERE~~~

Thunderstorms brought rain to most of Iowa Sunday (May 19) morning. Widespread thunderstorm activity, with numerous severe storms, impacted the state Sunday afternoon and Sunday night, however, this latest activity will be included in next week's summary. Rain totals for the week through 7 a.m. Sunday varied from none across portions of central and east central Iowa at locations such as Perry, Des Moines, Maquoketa and Davenport to 3.80 inches at Lake Mills. The statewide average precipitation was 0.56 inches or about one-half the weekly normal of 1.05 inches.

Temperatures for week ending May 19 averaged 8.4 degrees above normal for Iowa

Temperatures were well below normal Monday (May 13) morning with several record low temperatures set over eastern Iowa with the cold spot at Elkader with a 27 degree reading. However, much warmer air quickly returned by Monday afternoon with Sioux City reporting Iowa's first 90-degree temperature of the year. Exceptionally hot air prevailed on Tuesday (May 14) with all but a small area of southeast Iowa climbing to 90 degrees or higher. Triple-digit temperatures prevailed over the northwest with Sioux City reaching 106 degrees. This was a new record high for the month of May at Sioux City and only during the last three days of 1934 has any location in Iowa seen higher temperatures during the month.

Clinton followed a daily record low of 33 degrees on May 13 with a new record high on May 14 at 93 degrees F. Their 60-degree rise in temperatures tied for the largest day-to-day increase in temperatures at that location among 121 years of records at that location (for any time of the year). Temperatures for the remainder of the week were not as warm, but were still well above normal readings for the season with highs mostly in the 80's. Temperatures for the week as a whole averaged 8.4 degrees above normal.

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