In addition to the first freeze of the season, Iowa experienced drier weather this past week; however, wet field conditions remained an issue for farmers as they were limited to 3.1 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending October 13, 2019, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field work activities included chopping silage and harvesting hay, seed corn, soybeans and corn for grain.
Topsoil moisture condition was rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 68 percent adequate and 31 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture condition was rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 73 percent adequate and 26 percent surplus.
Nearly all of the corn crop has reached the dented stage or beyond at 97 percent statewide, with 72 percent reaching maturity, 3 weeks behind last year and 15 days behind average. Seven percent of corn has been harvested for grain, 18 days behind last year and nearly 2 weeks behind average. Corn condition remained unchanged from the previous week at 65 percent good to excellent. Ninety-seven percent of the soybean crop has begun coloring or beyond, nearly 2 weeks behind last year and 10 days behind average. Eighty-five percent of the crop has begun dropping leaves, 15 days behind last year and 10 days behind average. Seventeen percent of soybeans have been harvested, 9 days behind last year and 11 days behind average. Soybean condition rated 64 percent good to excellent.
The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 92 percent, over 3 weeks behind average. Pasture condition rated 45 percent good to excellent. Livestock have dealt with large temperature fluctuations the past 2 weeks and feedlots remain muddy.