Written by Theresa Rose on June 16, 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.

“The storms that rolled across the state last week limited the ability of farmers to get in fields to finish planting, spray weeds or make hay. Standing water has created some drowned-out spots that will need to be replanted if they dry out soon,” 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:


Sunny and warm temperatures early in the week spurred growth and fieldwork progress in Iowa, however fieldwork slowed due to wet conditions during the latter part of the week ending June 14, 2015, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were only 3.2 days suitable for fieldwork. Activities for the week included planting, cutting and baling hay, and spraying. Although some spraying was done early in the week, weeds remain a concern throughout the State as crop emergence continues and farmers are unable to get into their fields to spray.

Topsoil moisture levels rated to 0 percent very short, 2 percent short, 71 percent adequate and 27 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 0 percent very short, 4 percent short, 75 percent adequate and 21 percent surplus. South central Iowa is the only area of the State reporting no topsoil rated very short or short on moisture.

Ninety-eight percent of the corn crop has emerged, 6 days behind last year, but 4 days ahead of the 5-year average. Eighty-four percent of the corn crop was rated good to excellent. Soybean planting reached 93 percent complete, 2 weeks behind 2014, but equal to the average. Saturated soil conditions in southwest and south central Iowa continued to delay planting, with only 72 and 75 percent of their soybean crop in the ground, respectively. Soybean emergence reached 83 percent, 2 days behind normal. Soybean condition rated 80 percent good to excellent this week. Oats headed reached 49 percent this week, slightly ahead of last year, but 1 day behind average. Oat condition remained 81 percent good to excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay reached 66 percent complete this week. Hay conditions rated 78 percent good to excellent. Pasture condition rated 82 percent good to excellent. Livestock conditions were described as good due to mild temperatures, but reports out of western Iowa indicate insect stress on cattle is increasing. Cattle lots remain muddy throughout Iowa