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Isolated storms bring needed moisture

Published: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 11:28 a.m. CST • Updated: Tuesday, June 17, 2014 11:48 a.m. CST

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey commented today on the weekly Iowa Crops and Weather report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service. 

“Strong storms continue to roll through the state and cause isolated crop and property damage.  However, they also bring needed moisture and crops that have avoided the severe weather  remain in good shape, with 83 percent of corn and 79 of soybeans rated in good to excellent condition,” Northey said.

The report summary follows here:

Iowa farmers harvested over 30 percent of their alfalfa hay acreage during the week ending June 15, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Both precipitation and temperatures were below normal for the week. Statewide there were 5.4 days suitable for fieldwork. Other activities for the week included replanting crops, spraying, and nitrogen side dressing. 

Topsoil moisture levels rated 2 percent very short, 14 percent short, 78 percent adequate, and 6 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 4 percent very short, 23 percent short, 70 percent adequate, and 3 percent surplus. South central Iowa remained the wettest with nearly one-quarter of the topsoil in surplus condition. 

With almost the entire corn crop emerged, corn condition rated 1 percent very poor, 2 percent poor, 14 percent fair, 63 percent good, and 20 percent excellent. Ninety-five percent of the soybean acreage has emerged, 41 percentage points ahead of last year and 9 percentage points ahead of the five year average. Soybean condition rated 2 percent very poor, 3 percent poor, 16 percent fair, 61 percent good, and 18 percent excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay was 73 percent complete, 45 percentage points ahead of last year and 9 points above average. Hay condition was rated 0 percent very poor, 4 percent poor, 25 percent fair, 54 percent good, and 17 percent excellent. Pasture condition rated 1 percent very poor, 5 percent poor, 27 percent fair, 49 percent good, and 18 percent excellent.