Fieldwork activities were limited as rain across the State held Iowa farmers to just 1.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending May 12, 2019, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Iowa farmers remain hopeful for warmer conditions as below normal temperatures continued to slow crop emergence across the State.
Topsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 67 percent adequate and 32 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 66 percent adequate and 33 percent surplus.
Statewide, just 48 percent of the expected corn crop has been planted, 4 days behind last year and just over a week behind the five-year average. This is the smallest percent of corn planted by May 12 since 2013 when just 15 percent of the expected crop had been planted. It is the fifth time in 40 years that less than half the expected crop has been planted by May 12. West central Iowa has the highest percentage of corn planted at 67 percent, while northeast Iowa has the lowest percent of corn planted at 24 percent. Five percent of the crop has emerged, 5 days behind last year and over a week behind average. Thirteen percent of the expected soybean crop has been planted, 6 days behind both last year and average. Just 1 percent of the crop has emerged, 2 days behind average. Ninety-one percent of the expected oat crop has been planted, 1 day ahead of last year but 4 days behind average. Fifty-five percent of the crop has emerged, 2 days ahead of last year but a week behind average.
The first hay condition rating of the season was 1 percent very poor, 6 percent poor, 31 percent fair, 54 percent good and 8 percent excellent. Recent rains helped green up pastures, but growth remained slow due to below normal temperatures across the State. Pasture Condition rated 61 percent good to excellent, equal to last week. Rain this past week resulted in muddy feedlots again.