Producers keeping an eye on dry weather impact

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Iowa's continued dry, hot weather remains a concern for producers and is impacting the state's crop conditions despite "timely rains" last week in much of the state.

That's according to Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, commenting on this week's USDA Iowa Crops and Weather Report.

"Pasture land in particular has been stressed, and the result is less than half of Iowa's pastures are rated in good to excellent condition," Northey added.

The report shows rain amounts varying across the state this week, with most of the week's heaviest precipitation occurring in the southern half of the state.

Corn conditions improved slightly for the week while conditions for all other crops declined

The largest decreases occured in the northern third of the state.

Topsoil moisture levels improved to 14 percent very short, 40 percent short, 45 percent adequate and 1 percent surplus.

Subsoil moisture declined slightly and is now rated 18 percent very short, 43 percent short, 38 percent adequate and 1 percent surplus.

The report also shows corn has started to silk across much of the state with southeast Iowa leading with 2 percent.

Corn condition is reported at 2 percent very poor, 6 percent poor, 25 percent fair, 51 percent good, and 16 percent excellent.

Ninety-eight percent of the soybean crop has emerged, almost one week ahead of normal. Soybeans have started to bloom in each district of the state.

Soybean condition is rated 2 percent very poor, 9 percent poor, 28 percent fair, 50 percent good, and 11 percent excellent.

Ninety-five percent of the oat crop has headed, 3 weeks ahead of normal.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay, at 27 percent complete, is almost three weeks ahead of normal.

Hay condition is rated 4 percent very poor, 11 percent poor, 32 percent fair, 47 percent good, and 6 percent excellent.

The weekly report is also available on the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship's website at or on USDA's site at