The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal Media. The opinions expressed below are the author's own.
Read the latest crop reports from the fields across America! Also, submit your own comments.
Use this link to send us your comments about the crops in your local area. Be sure to send us your photos and videos! Comments will be edited for brevity and clarity.
What's happening in your fields? When will you start planting? Will your crop mix be the same as last year? Send us your photos and video! (Please keep your comments crop-related.)
Here's a sampling of what some folks are saying:
5/29 - Walsh County, Northeast North Dakota: Started seeding on Fri. May 21, ground really not fit to seed into, but it went ok. Many farmers got going about the same time around here. Sat. and Sunday were good, then a big rain on Memorial Day, from 2 to 4 inches. We might get going again by June 1, if we don't get any more rain. Much of the northeast quarter of the state will not get seeded. I went to Fargo this week; drove past miles of corn fields where the stalks had been burned off, and nothing else done with the ground. Our farm is about 11% seeded, many neighbors are less than that, some have more. Big question in this northern part of ND is “how late do we dare seed before the fall frost kills an immature crop?”
The small amount of wheat in the area looks good with little disease due to lack of moisture, pastures and grass hay will be short, 1st cutting of alfalfa is up. Potential for good crops but as always rain makes grain in this area (no irrigation).
5/28 - Western Kentucky: From Marion to Princeton through Wallonia to Hopkinsville, then north to Henderson and then east to Owensboro there are very few cornfields and of those, there is very little that looks good. The best is in Christian county near Gracey. Most fields have spotty stands, drowned out areas, and are yellow, if they are up at all. Many fields have been replanted at least partially and are just now coming up. There are several stalk fields that look like nothing has been done. Only one planter was running today, near Henderson on the Audubon Parkway, and it rained after I went through. We can still make a crop, if it keeps raining. If it doesn’t get too hot during pollination. If it doesn’t get down from a big wind in September. At least the wheat looks good and the pastures are good.
5/27 - Iroquois County, Illinois: A lot of corn is going in the ground right now. These are the worst conditions I have seen in over 40 years of farming. Everyone is mudding it in to get done and going around wet pockets in a lot of fields. We are going to have to have perfect weather for this crop to be just average.
-- Pam Smith, Farm Journal Seeds & Production Editor
(Have any photos of the crops on your farm? Send them to AgWeb and have them posted on Crop Comments! Be sure to include a caption.)
5/27 - St. Clair/Madison Counties, Southwest Illinois: Varied progress this weekend. Some planters were put away for the weekend Saturday morning when up to 1/2 “ fell in the middle of the county, while others were able to go until Monday when again varied rainfall fell with totals anywhere from a couple tenths to areas to 4-8 inches or maybe more in some areas of central Madison County. We have about ½ of our corn in. Some are nearly done with some barely started and some will have significant replanting to do. I’d put corn planting at around 50% with a lot of variability as you drive around. Wheat looks decent on the higher ground, but some of the low lying or flat fields are showing some lighter coloring. Looks like overall a decent crop, but in this area that is on very limited acres. I’ve heard of a bean field or two planted, but haven’t seen any with my own eyes.
5/26 - Carroll County, Illinois: Drove from Charleston, IL. to Chadwick (Carroll County). The only corn we saw up enough to see the rows were two fields south of Rock Falls (Whiteside Co) and two fields south of Milledgeville (Carroll Co.) Then we got three miles east of Chadwick and all the fields were up most of the way home, three miles west of Chadwick. Carroll Co does seem blessed most years.
-- Darrell Smith, Farm Journal Conservation & Machinery Editor
5/22 - Westminster, Maryland: Pam Smith, Farm Journal Seeds & Production Editor: Tommy Dell, of Westminster, Md., is planting a wheat cover crop to protect the Chesapeake Bay.
5/22 - Houston County, Minnesota: Finished our beans 2 days ago. Everything is in record time for us. Timely rains. Warm temps are here and 1st crop hay will be huge. Sounds great, huh? Sat down and penciled out what we can expect next fall for profits on the corn and beans if all goes well. Basically, if we donate our labor there is a profit. Slightly more than renting it out. 50% of our farm is in hay/grass this year. Next year even more goes into hay. Beef herd will grow in size accordingly. Tired of working to make the likes of Con Agra and Monsanto rich.
5/21 - Jefferson County, Iowa:Iowa may have 90% corn planted, but 50% of that went in when the ground was TOO wet.
5/21 - Chippewa County, Wisconsin: 87 degrees and windy so what’s new wind blows everyday corn and beans all in we are dry hay needs rain now we are in an extreme drought tired of hearing complaints of to much rain.
5/20 - Sioux County, Iowa: Most planting done. We need rain.
5/20 - Nueces County, South Texas: Extreme drought continues. 98+ percent of cotton acres zeroed out. 1.9 inches of rain for the year (9.5 is average). Adjusters are out looking at grain sorghum fields today. How do you forgive someone who drives through your best grain?
-- Nueces County, South Texas
5/20 - Wash County, Northeast North Dakota: Finally got into the field last evening with a coulter-cutter machine. It looked relatively dry from the road, and not too bad driving a pickup across some ground....but it was a different story when I got out there with a tractor....made a couple rounds in 4 fields and went home. Good thing our tractor has triples on it, or we would be pulling it out this morning. The local coop buried their fert. floater yesterday, took 2 big 4X4 tractors to get it out.
5/19 - West Central Missouri: We had been feeling pretty good about finding a window to plant the last weekend of April, but in this area every acre of corn that was planted the last of April is being replanted. Downpours and cold weather killed the seed. We replanted some May15th and should get more replanted in the next couple of days. No beans in the ground yet.
5/19 - Kearny County, Southwest Kansas:Wheat crop here is starting to go down hill. We had no winter moisture at all until the end of March. We then received about 2.5" in the part of the county I farm in. This moisture came in about three weeks. Our wheat up until about a few weeks ago was looking good. Our wheat is heading out now or is headed out. Starting to see allot of wheat that won't even head out now due to the drought again. There is allot of sick wheat out here. There is allot of thin wheat, wheat with Barley yellow dwarf and wheat streak mosaic showing up. Now we can't even by a rain out here. To the east of us they have still been getting some rains, but out here we are still in a drought. All of the irrigated corn is up and looking good. We are now waiting on a rain to start planting milo. I thought maybe about a month ago that we had finally broken the drought. Boy was I wrong! The first three days of this week are going to be in the 90's and very windy. Wish we could trade weather with you guys in the Corn Belt. You can always grow a crop with moisture, but you sure can't without it. At least out here it always dries up to get some sort of crop in. Just might not ever rain again though. Good luck everyone and I enjoy reading what is going on in your part of the world!
-- Darrell Smith, Farm Journal
Conservation & Machinery Editor
5/17 - Crawford County, Illinois: 4.5" of rain Wed. - Sat. this past week. Wish we had sprayed back in March when you could easily drive across a field. Very little spraying or NH3 application done here, let alone tillage or planting. There have been maybe 3-4 days in the last 2 months when you might have found somewhere you could work. Will be at least a week before we can even think about doing anything now, and some forecasts are already calling for rain in 7-8 days, just as it has been all spring. We need heat and wind to dry things up. Everyone will push it now and plant under very "un-ideal" conditions. Corn planting cut-off date is June 10-15. It's gonna be close.
5/16 - Logansport, North Central Indiana: 1.8" rain on Wednesday, then 3.5" Fri night/Sat morning. Corn 50-60% done, (first time). Only a few scattered fields emerging. Have so many ponds now that I am afraid we might be accused of waterboarding our corn. Beans I would estimate at 25% done. Gets a whole lot wetter as you go south 75 miles to Indianapolis.
-- Livingston County, Illinois
-- South Central North Dakota
-- Pam Smith,
Farm Journal Seeds & Production Editor
I will do this again to show the dramatic mid season difference that will exist and then finally the yield differential if any.
-- Lebanon, Pennsylvania
-- Tallahatchie County, Mississippi
On Wednesday, May 6, a visiting relative wanted to see some planters in action. So we stopped by the Farm Journal Corn College test plots at Heyworth, Ill., where the first day of planting was underway. Then we followed I-75 from Bloomington toward the Quad Cities. After leaving the Corn College site, we saw no machinery running until we got north of Galesburg, Ill.
Between there and Geneseo, planting was underway. Bryce and Jon Chamberlain, of Geneseo, were in their fourth day of planting. By the end of the day, about half of their corn was in the ground.
However, small showers were sweeping past, mostly to the north. Driving south from Geneseo toward I-74, we soon stopped seeing planters, and we drove in and out of showers until we were southeast of Bloomington.
Thursday morning, May 6, we drove a few miles south of Champaign. No equipment was running, and we saw no fields that appeared to have been planted. A farmer south of Urbana, Ill., noted: “It’s about like last year except that, last year, we had more corn planted before it turned wet.”
Tonight’s forecast for Champaign calls for a “60% chance of scattered strong storms.
Although dark clouds were sweeping across the sky, Jon Chamberlain, who farms with father Bryce near Geneseo, Ill., was able to complete his fourth day of planting on May 6.
Photo: Darrell Smith, Farm Journal
Conservation & Machinery Editor
-- Schmidt Farms, Queen Annes County, Maryland
-- Southwest Ohio
5/6 - Cuming County, Nebraska: Finished planting corn on Tuesday in some less than ideal conditions. Started planting Beans today but rain is on the way once again! The CBOT should begin to rally if they would just take a tour through the corn belt and discover just how much corn is not going to get planted!!!!
5/5 - Lee County, Illinois: Started planting corn today, as did most of our neighbors, into lousy conditions. Haven't planted in these kind of conditions in years, if ever. A lot of ponds and totally unworkable ground around the area. Bumper crop or even trend line is totally out of the equation. Oh well with the surplus-no problem. Oh ya as Earl Butz said in the 70's plant er fence to fence boys there'll NEVER be a surplus!! Seems like there always is no matter what.
5/4 - Benson County, North Dakota: Zero acres seeded! Won't be any this coming week either with more rain in the forecast. Wet, cold, wet, cold, wet, cold. Snow drifts in trees yet. Should have stayed in Arizona until May.
5/4 - Montgomery County, Ohio: We had 3 good days of planting April 25, 26 and 27. 15 – 20% of corn went in, since has rained ever day total of 1.9.” Now it’s hurry up and wait.
-- Audrain County, Missouri
5/1 - Northwest Ohio: I have not started yet. It was close on Monday. I worked on some wash outs needed 2 more days. Two tenths on Tuesday, 6 tenths on Thursday. Calling for more rain next week. At least inputs are coming down a little. Good luck to all. Looks like very tough year.
5/1 - Posey County, Indiana: Very slow start to Spring. Many neighbors put in a little corn over the weekend, but less than 10% planted with 1-2 inches of rain on the way this week yet. 3 days of sunny 80+ to get back in the fields.
5/1 - Reno County, South Central Kansas: Started corn last Thursday the 23rd. Got rained out and have only seen more rain since. Drizzling today. I'm guessing about 25% planted in this area which is way behind average. I also have not been able to burn down fields due to wet conditions and wind and the weeds are getting out of control. Wheat looks good.
Send an e-mail to Crop Comments
May 2009 Crop Comments
Crop Comments Archive