Tale Of Two Springs

To paraphrase Charles Dickens, this spring is the best of times in the central Corn Belt area, it is the worst of — well, more like not so good — times for those along the surrounding edges.

According to DTN meteorologists Bryce Anderson and Mike Palmerino during their “Late Spring Ag Weather Outlook” Webinar last week, there are areas where planting is going great and areas where weather has severely hampered planting efforts. This happens almost every spring. In 2009, Mother Nature has chosen to pick on the northern and eastern flanks of the Corn Belt, where rainfall has delayed planting, particularly to the east.

They noted that areas such as Iowa, planting is moving along quite well, and some growers are moving on to planting their soybean crops. Last spring was a much different story in north-central Iowa, where flooding and snowmelt caused many delays and replantings.

The Mississippi River is generally a demarcation point for the “haves” — those able to plant because of good weather, and the “have-nots” — those who are waiting for dry enough soil for planting. Need an example? Palmerino pointed to the “huge disparity” between Iowa (60 percent planting complete) and Illinois (5 percent planting complete). A year ago, that disparity in was much less and in Illinois’ favor at 25 percent vs. 16 percent for Iowa.

“In Illinois, it’s persistently wet, the soil is saturated, and they can’t get enough dry days to plant,” Palmerino said. Other Eastern states suffering from wet soils and cool weather include Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, and southern Missouri. The situation is similar in the Northern states. Heavy precipitation in the winter and spring, followed by a severe flood, has left northern Minnesota and North Dakota far behind, according to the U.S. Grains Council.

Overall, the most recent (at the time of the Webinar) USDA Crop Planting Progress report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) showed that 33 percent of corn had been planted. That was down 17 percent from the five-year average. This week’s NASS report states that corn planting has caught up with the 2008 figures at this point of the season — 48 percent — but before you celebrate, consider that the five-year average at this stage is 71 percent.

This week’s progress report states that Illinois has 10 percent planted compared to its five-year average of 68 percent; Indiana has completed 11 percent vs. its 70 percent average; Michigan has 18 percent complete vs. its 62 percent average; and Ohio has 22 percent planted vs. its 68 percent average.

At 14 percent, corn emergence is ahead of last year, but still lags behind the 28 percent five-year average.

Soybean planting is at 14 percent, compared to 11 percent last year and the 25 percent five-year average. Not surprisingly, the delays seem to be in the eastern Corn Belt. The NASS report shows Illinois with zero acres planted so far, compared to its 28 percent five-year average; Indiana is 2 percent planted vs. its 31 percent average; Ohio is at 13 percent planted vs. its 37 percent average; and Michigan reports 5 percent planted vs. its 29 percent average.

Palmerino and Anderson said the outlook for late spring is more of the same. "I just don’t see it changing all that much," said Palmerino. "Going forward from mid-month, things will probably be better – temperatures warmer, showers more scattered — in the affected areas. Most of the major states are running ahead of schedule, but the eastern Corn Belt will see gradual improvement."

How are your grower-customers faring? Is this the best, worst, or just average of the spring planting seasons of recent years?

Leave a Reply

Latest News
ManagementCorn and soy planting update; Takeaways from Climate Co…
December 2, 2016
AgriBusiness Global Editor Dave Frabotta Joins Paul Schrimpf for a discussion of global corn and soybean planting trends, and a Read More
Radish cover crop taproot
Crop InputsSoil Health Institute, Datu Research Receive Grant To E…
December 1, 2016
The Soil Health Institute (SHI) and Datu Research has announced a $626,000 grant from the Walton Family Foundation to quantify Read More
Mike Stern
Precision AgClimate Corp. CEO Talks Retailer Support For Digital Ag
December 1, 2016
CropLife Magazine’s sister publication, AgriBusiness Global, recently sat down with Mike Stern, CEO of The Climate Corp., following the Monsanto subsidiary’s Read More
ManagementAg Industry Comes Together To Address Climate Change
December 1, 2016
Addressing climate change — and more specifically, decreasing greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture — can only be achieved through collective Read More
Young soybean field
HerbicidesLiquid Formulation Valor EZ Herbicide Available For 201…
December 1, 2016
Valent U.S.A. Corp. has released Valor EZ; a liquid formulation of the company’s leading herbicide, Valor. Named Valor EZ Herbicide Read More
Key Cooperative Marcus Construction Steel Building
ManagementThe Value Of Cooperatives In Modern Agriculture
December 1, 2016
Editor’s Note: Jaxon Mullinnix of  Lone Tree, IA, was recently named the Iowa state winner of the 2017 GROWMARK essay Read More
AGCO Operator of the Year Tony Kornder
SprayersAGCO Names Tony Kornder Operator Of The Year
December 1, 2016
AGCO Corp. names Tony Kornder with Genesis Growing Solutions in Le Sueur, MN, the 11th annual Operator of the Year. Read More
Chris Henney OABA
ManagementOABA Industry Conference To Provide Outlook For Future …
November 29, 2016
The upcoming Ohio AgriBusiness Association Industry Conference is packed with widely-respected speakers and industry professionals, sharing their expertise on a Read More
Corn
InsecticidesMajor Review Finds Neonic Poses Low Risk To Aquatic Inv…
November 28, 2016
A major new ecotoxicological review and risk assessment has been published in the peer-reviewed literature and concluded that registered crop Read More
EquipmentGSI Details New Grain Drying Efficiency System for Coop…
November 28, 2016
Grain elevators and ag co-ops are always looking for ways to increase their energy efficiency to help improve profitability. For Read More
Precision AgTrimble Debuts End-to-End FMIS Platform
November 28, 2016
October’s inaugural PrecisionAg Vision Conference left this author with many thoughts and things to ponder in the coming months. Probably Read More
AGCO AgControl system
Precision AgPrecision Ag Technology: Rate Control For The Times
November 28, 2016
It’s not surprising that the need for more economical, effective application is driving the demand for the latest rate controllers Read More
ARA
Eric SfiligojTaking The Industry’s Pulse At ARA
November 28, 2016
When most of you read this particular column, many of the industry’s key folks will probably be spending at least Read More
CHS Primeland
CropLife 100The 2016 CropLife 100 Report: Reviewing The Many Bulls …
November 28, 2016
For virtually all of 2016, the nation was wholly focused on the big Presidential election. Some folks aligned themselves with Read More
FertilizerNutrient Management, Conservation Among Topics Covered …
November 23, 2016
Certified crop advisers, consultants, farmers, agribusiness professionals and students will learn more about nutrient management, soil and water conservation, pest Read More
Monsanto sign
Crop InputsMissouri Governor Meets With Bayer CEO To Discuss Monsa…
November 21, 2016
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon visited Bayer AG global headquarters in Leverkusen, Germany, on November 18 to discuss the proposed Bayer-Monsanto Read More
Arysta LifeScience
Crop InputsArysta LifeScience Forms Alliance With Beem Biologics
November 21, 2016
As part of its recently announced strategy to become a leader in high-value, high-growth specialty market segments in the crop Read More
DuPont sign
Crop InputsDuPont To End Pension Contribution For Active Employees
November 18, 2016
DuPont will no longer contribute to active employees’ pension plans, a move that will affect the retirement of 13,000 workers, Read More