Most of the state received much needed rain Friday, July 30 and Saturday, July 31 which meant Iowa farmers had 5.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending August 1, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities continue to include applying fungicides and insecticides and harvesting hay and oats.
Topsoil moisture levels rated 16% very short, 34% short, 49% adequate and 1% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 20% very short, 41% short, 39% adequate and 0% surplus. Although moisture levels improved slightly in northwest Iowa, the shortage remains evident with topsoil rated 62% short to very short and subsoil rated 82% short to very short.
Corn silking or beyond reached 92%, one day ahead of the 5-year average. Corn in or beyond the dough stage reached 42%, four days ahead of average. Five percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage. Iowa’s corn condition was rated 62% good to excellent. Ninety-three percent of soybeans were blooming, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average.
Soybeans setting pods reached 73%, eight days ahead of normal. Soybean condition was rated 61% good to excellent.
Oats coloring or beyond reached 97%. Seventy-two percent of oats for grain have been harvested, equal to the 5-year average.
The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 92% complete. The third cutting was reported at 22% complete, 1 day ahead of the 5-year average. Hay condition rated 57% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 40% good to excellent.
No livestock comments were received this week.
Area Weather Summary
Beneficial rains fell across much of Iowa during the reporting period with above-average totals observed over portions of southern Iowa. Departures were observed in north-central Iowa on the order of up to an inch below normal. Along with an active storm track, sweltering conditions blanketed Iowa over several days with temperatures well into the 90s; the statewide average temperature was 76.0 degrees, 3.3 degrees above normal. According to National Weather Service Meteorologist Kristy Carter, August is going to be more of the same.
Area precipitation for the month of July locally fell below normal standards. The area received 3.21 inches of rain compared to the normal amount of 4.6 inches. This left the area 1.39 inches below normal for the month of July.
Carter explained that the area continues to be in a drought status.
Area temperatures were higher than normal across the area. the average high was 82.7 degrees while the normal is 81.3 degrees which meant the area was 1.4 degrees higher than normal.
Lows in the area were the same story. The average low was 62.6 degrees while it is normally 61.5 degrees. This left the area 1.1 degrees warmer than normal for July.