Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.
“This run of extremely wet weather has slowed harvest progress dramatically and as a result soybean harvest is now well behind the five-year average. We need the rains to stop and several days of dry weather so fields can dry and farmers are able to get back to harvest,” Naig 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 summary follows here:
Continued wet weather conditions allowed Iowa farmers just 1.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending October 7, 2018, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Activities for the week included harvesting corn and soybeans when weather permitted.
Topsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 0 percent short, 41 percent adequate and 59 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 1 percent very short, 2 percent short, 50 percent adequate and 47 percent surplus. Recent rains have boosted topsoil moisture supplies in south central and southeast Iowa to 99 percent adequate to surplus.
Ninety-five percent of the corn crop was mature, 9 days ahead of average. Fifteen percent of the State’s corn for grain has been harvested, 10 days ahead of last year. Farmers in southeast Iowa continue to lead the way with 39 percent of their corn for grain harvested. Moisture content of field corn being harvested was at 20 percent. Corn condition rated 70 percent good to excellent. Nearly all of the soybean crop was coloring with 94 percent dropping leaves, 8 days ahead of average. Eighteen percent of the soybean crop has been harvested, 5 days behind the average. Soybean condition rated 70 percent good to excellent.
The third cutting of alfalfa hay was nearly complete at 98 percent. Pasture condition improved slightly to 55 percent good to excellent. Muddy feedlot conditions have been a challenge for cattle producers.
IOWA PRELIMINARY WEATHER SUMMARY
By Dr. Justin Glisan, State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship
The first week of October had unsettled conditions statewide with above average rainfall and generally below average temperatures. Precipitation totals were up to four inches above normal with higher accumulations in eastern Iowa. Temperatures were cooler than expected, except in the southeastern corner. Monday (1st) was a rainy day for Iowa’s northern two-thirds as a low pressure system moved into the state. Rainfall totals into Tuesday (2nd) morning were above one inch for over 40 stations with Dubuque (Dubuque County) reporting 2.31 inches, 2.21 inches above normal. Average highs ranged from the 50s in the northwest with gradual warming into the lower 70s towards the southeast. Showers and thunderstorms continued across northern parts of Iowa during the day on Wednesday (3rd). Statewide highs were in the upper 70s and low 80s. Late in the evening a cold front moved through Iowa, bringing rain to the southeast. Accumulations were under an inch with Newton (Jasper County) observing the highest total of 0.81 inches. With the cold front exiting Iowa early Thursday, highs cooled into the 50s. Multiple rounds of showers and thunderstorms moved through Iowa Friday (5th) through Sunday (7th), especially across the southern and eastern counties. Heavy rain was observed in eastern Iowa Friday evening into early Saturday (6th); Williamsburg (Iowa County) reported 3.65 inches, 3.55 inches above average. Stations from Marion to Scott counties recorded accumulations above two inches. Measurable rainfall was reported across much of Iowa on Sunday. Weekend highs ranged from the upper 40s in the north to lower 60s in the south. De Soto (Harrison County) observed the week’s warmest temperature of 93 degrees on the 2nd. Estherville (Emmet County) reported the week’s low of 30 degrees on the 4th. Statewide average precipitation was around 1.61 inches, 0.93 inches above the average of 0.68 inches.