NEWS

Wet weather slows harvest

Harvest 'well behind' the five year average

Andy Monoghan uses his recently purchased 6088 series International Harvester combine tractor for the first time on his soy beans in Masonville on Tuesday, September 30, 2014. (Sy Bean/The Gazette)
Andy Monoghan uses his recently purchased 6088 series International Harvester combine tractor for the first time on his soy beans in Masonville on Tuesday, September 30, 2014. (Sy Bean/The Gazette)

Dry weather allowed farmers to harvest 30 percent of the state’s soybean acreage for the week ending Oct. 12, but muddy fields have slowed harvest, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 4 percent short, 78 percent adequate and 18 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 1 percent very short, 7 percent short, 80 percent adequate and 12 percent surplus. Southwest Iowa was the wettest with just under half of its topsoil in surplus condition.

Ninety percent of Iowa’s corn acreage was mature — 4 days behind the five-year average. Corn harvest reached 10 percent, almost 3 weeks behind the normal pace.

Moisture content of corn at harvest remained high at 23 percent, which contributed to the slower than normal progress. Seventy-six percent of the corn crop was reported in good to excellent condition. Ninety-five percent of the soybean crop was dropping leaves or beyond. Soybean harvest advanced to 39 percent complete, one week behind normal.

Seventy-four percent of the soybean acreage was in good to excellent condition.

“It was good to make some progress with harvest last week, but we are still well behind the five year average,” said Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey. “Some parts of the state may have a challenge trying to catch up with harvest due to the wet weather we are experiencing this week.”

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