Harvest is nearing completion for some as Iowa farmers had 6.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending October 18, 2020, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Other field activities again included baling corn stalks, applying fertilizer and manure, and fall tillage. Cover crops are beginning to green up where early planting was possible.
Topsoil moisture condition rated 18% very short, 40% short, 42% adequate and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture condition rated 22% very short, 39% short, 39% adequate and 0% surplus.
Corn for grain harvested in the State reached 65%, over 3 weeks ahead of last year and just over 2 weeks ahead of average. Moisture content of field corn being harvested for grain fell to 16%. Farmers in south central Iowa still have approximately two-thirds of their corn for grain yet to be harvested while farmers in the remainder of the State have already harvested at least one-half of their crop.
Only 10% of Iowa’s soybean crop remains to be harvested, also over 3 weeks ahead of last year and over 2 weeks ahead of average. Farmers in northwest, north central and west central Iowa have less than 5% of their soybeans remaining to be harvested. In contrast, farmers in the southern one-third of the state have at least 20% of their soybeans remaining to be harvested.
Pasture condition rated 20% good to excellent. Some pastures are already dormant. Cattle producers in some areas continue to supplement hay and water supplies. There were scattered reports of cows turned out on corn stalks.
Forest City Area Weather Summary
Temperatures across the state over the reporting period varied from slightly cooler than average over portions of northern Iowa to slightly warmer conditions in southern Iowa. Here in the Forest City area, highs were again below normal as were the lows. The average high in the area was 70.7 degrees while the normal is 72.9. This leaves the area 2.2 degrees below normal for highs. Lows were much closer to normal with the average low at 49.1 degrees and the normal is 50.1. The area was .7 degrees below normal for lows.
Precipitation is well above normal for the month. The normal amount for October is 3.24 inches of precipitation, but the area has received 3.97 inches which means we are now .73 inches above normal for the month.