Harvests almost done; soft wheat emergence slow

by Laura Lloyd
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WASHINGTON – The 2014 corn and soybean harvests were close to completion as of Nov. 16 and mostly on schedule compared with their five-year averages, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its most recent Crop Progress report.

The corn crop in the 18 major states was 89% harvested compared with 88% as the five-year average. Top producers  Iowa and Illinois both were ahead of their averages for the date, with Iowa 92% harvested compared with an average of 90%, and  Illinois 94% harvested compared with 89% as the average.

Only a couple of far-northern states lagged. Michigan was 59% harvested as of Nov. 16 compared with 75% as the average, and Wisconsin was 64% harvested compared with 78% as the average, the U.S.D.A. said.

Soybeans in the 18 major states were 94% harvested as of Nov. 16 compared with 96% as the five-year average. Top-producers such as Illinois (95% completed compared with 97% as the five-year average) and Iowa (98% compared with 99% as the average) indicated the 2014 soybean  crop, expected to be record large, was winding down nearly on schedule despite slow early development  because of a cool, wet growing season.

Emergence of winter wheat in the 18 major states exceeded the five-year average as of Nov. 17. The U.S.D.A. said 87% of the crop was emerged compared with 84% as the five-year average. The crop in top-producing Kansas was 92% emerged as of Nov. 16 compared with 91% as the five-year average for the date. Among other key hard red winter wheat states, emergence in Oklahoma was 93% compared with 89% as the average, Texas was 76% compared with 73%, Nebraska was 100% compared with 98%, Montana was 100% emerged compared with 87% and South Dakota was 98% emerged compared with 88%. 

Despite soft red winter wheat’s  emergence mostly exceeding the five-year average on a state-by-state basis, crop development was  generally behind  for the date compared with growing seasons since 1985, said Martell Crop Projections meteorologist Gail Martell, Whitefish Bay, Wis.

She pointed out that Illinois, 64% emerged in the latest week, had only one year of more meager emergence for the date in the past three decades at 45% emerged in mid-November of 2009.  Indiana, 81% emerged, only surpassed the 55% emerged for the date in 2009. Ohio, 86% emerged in the latest week, beat the same week in  1990, 2006, 2009 and 2011, when  emergence was between 70% and 80%, she said. Michigan, 82% emerged, exceeded its 1992 rate of emergence for the date of 80%. Missouri, 59% emerged in the latest week, was only ahead of 1986 (48%) and 2009 (33%) for the date, Ms. Martell said.

Winter wheat crop conditions were unchanged from the previous week at 60% good to excellent, 34% fair and 6% very poor to poor, the U.S.D.A. said.
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