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Cooler Weather Eases Crop Stress

Published: Friday, September 6, 2019

The following is from the Indiana Field Office of USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service for the week ending Sept. 1.

Cooler temperatures and above average precipitation eased the stress on crops and pastures throughout the state. Soil moisture levels continued to improve last week, but some areas, particularly in the northern part of the state, could have used more rainfall.

The average temperature for the week was 69.7 degrees F, 2.5 degrees below normal.

The amount of rainfall varied from none to 2.50 inches over the week. The statewide average precipitation was 1.08 inches.

There were 5.4 days suitable for fieldwork.

The mild weather and moderate rainfall last week helped to stabilize crop conditions, though growers continued to hope for a late frost with corn and soybean development still running behind schedule.

Farmers took advantage of the midweek dry stretch to make progress with hay cutting. Livestock enjoyed the cooler weather, and hay was being fed in some areas due pasture shortages.

Other activities for the week included tillage, planting cover crops, mowing roadsides, preparing machinery for fall harvest, and attending Purdue Extension field days.

Topsoil moisture was rated very short, 7 percent; short, 29 percent; adequate, 61 percent; surplus, 3 percent.

Subsoil moisture was rated very short, 7 percent; short, 30 percent; adequate, 61 percent; surplus, 2 percent.

The crop progress schedule (last week, previous week, 2018 and 5-year average) showed: corn, silking 97, 94, 100, 100; corn, dough 70, 59, 96, 93; corn, dented 26, 17, 72, 63; corn, mature 1, NA, 21, 13; soybeans, blooming 93, 89, 100, 100; soybeans, setting pods 76, 65, 99, 97; alfalfa hay, third cutting 63, 50, 84, 80; alfalfa hay, fourth cutting 3, NA, 19, 11; other hay, second cutting 94, 90, 100, 99; other hay, third cutting 40, 32, 65, 62.

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