In spite of widespread rain showers during the past week, corn planting remains ahead of schedule. Iowans had planted 64% of their corn acres by Sunday, which is ahead of last year’s 52 percent and the five-year average of 58 percent. Nebraska advanced to 74% of their corn acres planted and Minnesota to 73%. Just 34% of Wisconsin’s corn crop was in the ground as of Sunday, that’s 16% more than a week ago and 4% ahead of the 5-year average. Soybean planting is a bit slow, as well.
“We’re still within the window to plant corn and achieve high yields. Farmers have until late May to get their seed in the ground,” Roger Elmore, professor of agronomy at Iowa State University with research and extension responsibilities in corn production. “It’s far better to wait for good soil conditions than it is to ‘mud in’ your seed.”
Planting early ensures the best yields if weather conditions are right. Planting in wet soils can lead to other, yield-robbing situations like compaction. Forty-one percent of Iowa’s corn crop was planted in just 4 days, so it won’t take long for the remaining seed corn to get out of the bag and into the ground.
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