Soggy Crop-3

A corn plant is seen in a field in Madrid, Iowa on June 27, 2013. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday, June 28, 2013, farmers will come through with the predicted corn crop despite a wet spring in the Midwest that delayed planting and has left puddles standing in some fields.

OTTUMWA — Fields remained wet across most of Iowa as the state’s first crop progress and condition report of April was released earlier this week.

The report from the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service shows that field work activities are slowed by the wet conditions. Statewide, there were 2.7 days suitable for field work with reports of producers applying anhydrous, spreading manure and planting oats.

Topsoil and subsoil moisture levels rated the same (0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 77 percent adequate and 22 percent surplus). Eight percent of the expected oat crop has been planted, five days ahead of last year but two days behind the five-year average.

Pastures and hay, according to the report, have started to green. Livestock conditions were generally good with calving going well for most cattle operations.

The suitable days for fieldwork is well ahead of last year’s pace, with less than one day (0.8) on average suitable. The southeast Iowa district has the highest percentage (87 percent) of adequate subsoil, according to the report.

Unseasonably dry conditions dominated Iowa during the reporting period. Only sections of south-central Iowa reported above average amounts. Deficits across much of the state were between 0.2–0.6 inches.

Temperatures were near normal statewide with an average temperature of 43 degrees, 0.1 degrees below normal.

The Iowa field office will release the current crop progress and condition report each week through the final week of November. The next report is scheduled for April 13.

The USDA (United State Department of Agriculture) also announced this week the National Agricultural Statistics Service will contact survey respondents in the states of Michigan, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin who previously reported unharvested corn and/or soybean acreage. If the newly collected date justifies any chances, NASS will update the Jan. 10 estimates in the May 12 crop productions report.

Stock estimates are also subject to review since unharvested production is included in the estimate of on-farm stocks. When NASS surveyed producers in December for the 2019 crop production summary, there was significant unharvested acreage of corn in Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin as well as unharvested soybean acreage in Michigan, North Dakota and Wisconsin.

The unharvested area and expected production were included in the totals released on Jan. 10. NASS announced plans to re-survey producers in January, however, because it was unclear when producers would be able to complete harvest.

Scott Jackson can be reached at sjackson@ottumwacourier.com. Follow him on Twitter@CourierScott.

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