Written by Theresa Rose on June 9, 2015

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey today commented on the Iowa Crops and Weather report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service. The report is released weekly from April through October.

“Unfortunately, southwest and south central Iowa continue to battle wet conditions that have slowed planting progress and left them significantly behind the rest of the state. Hopefully some warm temperatures and dry weather will allow farmers to get back in the fields to finish planting if need be and do other needed fieldwork such as spraying and side dressing fertilizer,” Northey said

The weekly report is also available on the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship’s website at or on USDA’s site at The report summary follows here:


Warmer temperatures and plenty of sunshine improved field conditions in Iowa during the week ending June 7, 2015, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Farmers were able to continue planting, while finally getting into previously wet fields to apply herbicide and side dress nitrogen. Statewide there were 4.3 days suitable for fieldwork, allowing farmers to harvest almost a third of the first cutting of alfalfa hay. Reports out of western Iowa stated that grain movement is fairly strong and many farmers are hauling out their old crop.

Topsoil moisture levels rated to 0 percent very short, 3 percent short, 78 percent adequate and 19 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 5 percent short, 81 percent adequate and 14 percent surplus. South central Iowa had the highest topsoil moisture level at 100 percent rated adequate to surplus. North central Iowa reported the highest subsoil moisture levels rated at 99 percent adequate to surplus.

Ninety-six percent of the corn crop has emerged, 4 days ahead of the 5-year average. Eighty-two percent of the corn crop was rated good to excellent. Soybean planting reached 88 percent complete, 9 days behind 2014, and 1 day behind average. Southwest and south central Iowa continued to lag behind in the planting of their expected soybean acreage with only 51 and 65 percent of their soybean crop in the ground, respectively. Soybean emergence reached 71 percent, 4 days behind last year. The first soybean condition rating of the season came in at 0 percent very poor, 2 percent poor, 18 percent fair, 67 percent good, and 13 percent excellent. Twenty-four percent of the oat acreage was at or beyond the heading stage this week, slightly ahead of last year, but 3 days behind average. Oat condition remained 81 percent good to excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay went from a week behind normal to even with the 5-year average this week and now stands at 49 percent complete. Hay conditions rated 81 percent good to excellent. Pasture condition improved to 79 percent good to excellent. Livestock experienced little stress.