As a whole, corn yields in in North Central Iowa and South Central Minnesota were very good considering the growing conditions we were faced with this year. Although the yield variations were very dramatic, averages were above most people’s expectations. Corn harvest is 98% complete with tillage close to being done. Yields in the area seemed to show better in general with longer season maturities.
Dry harvest moisture was a very common theme this year. The entire harvest was like nothing most farmers have ever seen, but with that being said, soybean yields offered many pleasant surprises. Yields showed up very well in this area. For many areas, it was an “opposite year” as areas in a field that typically drowned out raised the averages this year and the higher areas of the farms didn’t yield quite as high. It will be interesting to see the acreage mix for next year with soybeans holding their own under very tough growing conditions. Soybean harvest is complete and tillage of the bean stuble is varied this year with dryness causing a concern for the future.
Early maturing corn in North Central Iowa, 96- and 97-day, which was planted around April 11 is starting to reach full maturity. It looks like a majority of corn in this area will reach black layer stage around Labor Day. A few growers are talking about starting harvest in the week of or the week following Labor Day. Many farmers say they plan to take out their early corn before starting in soy beans. Crop conditions and yield estimates vary incredibly. I’m getting a very wide range of projections, depending on the area as the amount of and the timing of rain showers also varied greatly.
Just this week, some soybeans started to turn. It’s a sure sign that soybeans are getting closer to harvest. Although soybeans vary greatly in projected yields and conditions, it appears there might still be some chance for further yield potential.
As of Monday, May 21, corn is 100% planted here and on its way to being completely emerged. In most areas that missed the large rainfall about 2 weeks ago, emergence is good. Depending on planting date, the corn ranges anywhere from growth stages VE to V3. Parts of Kossuth County in Northwest Iowa received heavy rainfall shortly after planting, and I’m hearing some farmers are replanting corn due to crusting and some drowned conditions. As a whole, however, corn plant health is very good and improving daily with the additional heat we’re getting. Stand counts look very good where I have been in the fields.
Soybean planting, for the most part, is complete. Although it’s still early, it feels like the amount of replanting will be less than in the recent past. I walked one field close to the Iowa-Minnesota border that was replanted due to the crusting from the heavy rain storm in early May. I’m seeing a few bean fields starting to pop through the ground and believe we’ll see more of this toward the end of the week if the heat continues. Planting conditions were good, so I anticipate a very good stand and emergence for the soybean crop in this region.
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