CROP PROGRESS CONTINUES TO IMPROVE

About 6.3 days suitable for fieldwork allowed Missouri farmers to continue planting at a faster than average pace.  This week’s USDA Crop Progress report indicates that as of Sunday, 91 percent of corn has been planted, and 64 percent has emerged.  It’s an improvement from last year’s 86 percent planted and 58 percent emerged, and the five-year average of 76 percent planted and 54 percent emerged.  Conditions are better than a year ago, with 61 percent good or excellent compared to just two percent poor.

42 percent of soybeans have been planted, with 12 percent emerged.  Again it’s better than last year’s rain-delayed progress with 22 percent planted and three percent emerged.  A third of Missouri’s sorghum is in the ground, a significant jump from last week’s six percent and better than last year’s 20 percent.  Winter wheat remains behind pace, with 61 percent headed, compared to 93 percent last year and the five-year average of 65 percent.  Conditions have slipped with 47 percent in good or excellent condition, along with 11 percent poor or very poor.

In the Bootheel, cotton planting has accelerated, with 36 percent of the crop planted in the past week.  This week’s 73 percent completion point is better than last year’s 43 percent and the five-year average of 54 percent.  However, rice is still behind pace, with 76 percent planted and 48 percent emerged.  Last year 83 percent of rice was in the ground with 69 percent emerged.  60 percent is in good or excellent condition while six percent is poor.

Pasture conditions are growing more troublesome, with 30 percent in poor or very poor condition and just 20 percent in good or excellent condition.  Nine percent of alfalfa has received its first cutting, down from 14 percent a year ago, while other hay cutting is at six percent.  Two-thirds of Missouri farmers say they don’t have enough hay in stock, while 21 percent are lacking adequate water supply.  46 percent of topsoil and 40 percent of subsoil is in need of more moisture.  Temperatures last week averaged 72.2 degrees, 9.5 degrees above normal.