Pro Farmer Editors
The 2009 Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour found an average Illinois corn yield of 167.17 bu. per acre, up 0.1% from year-ago. The crop this year, like last year, is going to need to really nice finish to realize the yield potential. Some fields will need as much, if not more, weeks of frost-free weather this fall to make it to the finish line unscathed.
"There just weren't those big yields that one almost expects to see out of Illinois. There weren't that many shifts from year-ago in terms of the various categories we measure -- grain length, kernel rows or ear counts -- to really move that yield one way or the other," said Eastern Tour Director and Pro Farmer News Editor Roger Bernard.
For soybeans, the Tour counted 1102.80 pods in a 3 ft. by 3 ft. square, down 15.1% from year-ago. As the groups moved west, more of those yield robbing things like SDS and white mold were found. Those types of maladies are supported more with wet conditions. Soil moisture ratings that are assigned to soybeans (a scale of 1 to 6 -- six is water standing in the fields; 1 is dry with large cracks in the ground).This year things came in at 4.08 compared to 2.69 in 2008.
The Tour will release final Iowa and Minnesota numbers tonight, but in western Iowa, excellent corn was seen. The increase is the result of two key factors -- ear populations and grain length. Still a lot of Iowa to tour, but it's a really (really) good corn crop in western Iowa, says Western Tour Director and Pro Farmer Editor, Chip Flory.
"The bean crop is generally healthy, has a lot of pods and it's got water to finish. There's one comment I always try to remember to mention on Crop Tour, and that's, "If scouts boots are muddy on Crop Tour, do not underestimate the potential of the bean crop. Water at this time of the year on a bean crop normally leads to a "good" bean crop," said Flory.
Today the western Tour will move on to sample portions of western and southern Minnesota, while the eastern Tour will take routes in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota, merging in Austin, Minnesota, for the final meeting of the Tour.
Click here for Illinois Midwest Crop Tour results.
To stay up to date on what scouts are finding, make sure you follow the Crop Tour coverage at this link. Check this link for instructions on how to sample your own fields like scouts will be doing on the Crop Tour. You can also follow the Crop Tour on Twitter! Just go to www.twitter.com, and signup for the service. After you create an account (it's free), click on "Find People" and type in "Midwest Crop Tour." After you get there, click on "Follow." Every time we update, you can get the comment either on Twitter or your cell phone. When we update, we'll tell you where we're at, what we're seeing in the field and any other general comments we think are worthy in the 140 characters we're allowed to use in each comment.
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Professional Farmers of America (PFA) is part of Farm Journal Media, the nation's leading agricultural media company. PFA provides news, perspective, and analysis presented in a variety of formats including the weekly Pro Farmer newsletter - the nation's most widely circulated agricultural newsletter. The organization is also known for its seminars and live events including Midwest Crop Tour.
About Farm Journal Media
Farm Journal Media is the nation's leading agricultural media company. Its magazines are the 133-year-old flagship Farm Journal, as well as Top Producer, Beef Today, Dairy Today and Implement & Tractor. The company produces two national television programs, "AgDay" and "U.S. Farm Report." Its Web sites include the nation's leading agricultural portal, AgWeb.com, and the most comprehensive farm equipment site, MyMachinery.com. Farm Journal Media also publishes the Pro Farmer family of newsletters, produces numerous live events, offers custom publishing services and provides extensive database services.