Farmers continue to struggle to finish corn planting, epitomizing what has been a season already plagued with excessive rain, snow and cold. With 91 percent of corn and 57 percent of soybeans planted as of Sunday and more rain in the forecast, the progress at the tail-end of planting will likely continue to inch along.
Corn: 91 percent planted, 74 percent emerged
Storms drenched fields across the Midwest last week, and few states were able to make substantial progress in planting corn as a result.
In Iowa, the nation’s top corn-producing state, corn planting crept ahead by 3 percentage points to 88 percent. This is one of the lower percentages reported by this week’s Crop Progress report. Reuters reports that Iowa has received the most spring rainfall in 141 years. From March through May, more than 17 inches of rain fell across the state.
Corn conditions show just how much of an impact the wet weather has made. With 11 percent of its corn in poor to very poor condition, Iowa has tied Colorado with having the worst corn conditions in the country.
Overall, 63 percent of the nation’s corn is in good to excellent condition. This is 9 percentage points lower than the corn conditions reported this time in 2012.
Soybeans: 57 percent planted, 31 percent emerged
Consequently, like corn, soybean planting has been dramatically slowed by spring storms. Iowa corn planting crawled to 44 percent, compared to 40 percent last week. Planting in Missouri, another state inundated by precipitation last week, inched ahead by 6 percentage points to 36 percent.
Thirty-one percent of soybeans are now emerged, which is down from the five-year average of 49 percent. This is the slowest planting rate for soybeans since 1996, when farmers had seeded 35 percent of their crop by the end of May.
Meteorologists expect occasional showers over the next 10 days, with two more rounds of rain forecast in this active weather pattern.
Reuters reports that the “slow seeding of both corn and soybeans this spring has raised concerns about reduced yields at the autumn harvest as key phases of crop development will probably be delayed until the heat of the summer. A late planting also increases the possibility that an early frost this fall would inflict further damage on the crops.” Read more.