Monday, July 14, 2014
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Iowa: Driest Week This Season Gets Farmers Back in Fields – USDA

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Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending July 13, 2014.

Iowa welcomed drier conditions which allowed farmers to get back in the fields during the week ending July 13, 2014, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were 4.2 days suitable for fieldwork, the first time since mid-June that farmers have had over 3.0 days suitable across the whole State. Activities for the week include herbicide application, replanting drowned out crops, and cutting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 2 percent short, 73 percent adequate, and 25 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 6 percent short, 77 percent adequate, and 17 percent surplus. Central Iowa was the wettest, with well over one-third of the topsoil in surplus condition.

Twenty-six percent of the corn acreage was silking, 25 percentage points ahead of last year and 1 percentage point ahead of the five-year average. Seventy-six percent of the corn crop was reported in good to excellent condition, unchanged from the previous week. Forty-five percent of the soybean acreage was blooming, 11 days ahead of the previous year and slightly ahead of normal. Six percent of the soybean crop was setting pods, 11 days ahead of last year and one day ahead of normal. Seventy-three percent of the soybean crop was rated in good to excellent condition, unchanged from last week.

Ninety-seven percent of the oat crop has headed, equal to the previous year but 1 percentage point behind the five-year average. Sixty percent of the oat acreage has turned color, 18 percentage points ahead of the previous year but 10 points behind average. Oat harvest was 8 percent complete 5 percentage points ahead of last year but 11 points behind the normal pace. Seventy-three percent of the oat acreage was reported in good to excellent condition.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay was 97 percent complete, 3 points behind last year and 1 point behind average. The second cutting of alfalfa was 27 percent complete, one day ahead of last year but 11 days behind normal. Sixty-eight percent of all hay was rated in good to excellent condition. Pasture condition rated 75 percent good to excellent. High insect counts caused stress to livestock across the State.

IOWA PRELIMINARY WEATHER SUMMARY
Provided by Harry Hillaker, State Climatologist
Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship

Temperatures and precipitation averaged slightly below normal for the past reporting week. The week began with above normal temperatures and scattered thunderstorms on Sunday (6th) and Monday (7th). Temperatures reached as high as 96 degrees at Sidney on Sunday (6th) with highs mostly in the eighties on Monday. Rainfall with the early week storms were mostly on the light side with just a few areas near the Missouri border approaching an inch of accumulation. Dry and cooler weather, with daytime highs mostly near eighty degrees, prevailed from Tuesday (8th) into Friday (11th).

The week’s lowest temperature was recorded at Spencer on Wednesday morning at 50 degrees. Warmer and more humid weather returned for the weekend with the bulk of the weeks’ rain falling between Friday night and Saturday night. Greatest rain totals were over west central, east central and extreme southern Iowa where a few areas received more than two inches.

Weekly rain totals varied from only sprinkles at Oakland and Logan to 4.64 inches at Denison and 4.10 inches at North Liberty. The statewide average precipitation was 0.92 inches or just a little less than the weekly normal of 1.05 inches. Temperatures averaged 1.4 degrees below normal for the week.

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