Iowa Crop Update for June 12 to June 20, 2017

June 20, 2017 4:46 PM
Blog Post

Some much needed rain fell across parts of the state last week, but with the rain came some strong winds and hail in parts of the state. Other areas could still use some rain. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach field agronomists share what they are seeing in the fields and crop progress in their respected regions.

Rainfall totals across the state over the last 7 days. Source:

Northwest Iowa

Paul Kassel (Region 2): “Crop conditions continue to look good across my area. Early May planted corn is in the V9 stage and the mid-May planted soybean crop is in the V2 stage. Farmers have completed post-emergence application of herbicides to corn and have also completed side dress applications of nitrogen to corn fields. Most of the fieldwork is focused on post-emergence application of herbicides to the soybean crop. Waterhemp has escaped some of the pre-emergence herbicide applications and is growing rapidly. Hail damaged some corn and soybean fields in parts of Emmet and Palo Alto County. It appears most of the corn is recovering but some soybean fields were replanted.”

Soybean herbicide application in Pocahontas County. Photo by Paul Kassel. 

Northeast Iowa

Terry Basol (Region 4): “Rain was well received over the past week for the better part of NE Iowa. In general, the area received 1-2 inches of precipitation, with isolated areas of heavier accumulations (see the precipitation map attached). Unfortunately, there was hail that accompanied the storm system this past Thursday evening (June 15th) that resulted in crop damage in areas of Black Hawk, Southern Butler, a Grundy counties. There are however some small areas or pockets that are still fairly dry, as they’ve missed the lions’ share of the rains. Ken Pecinovsky, NE IA Research and Demonstration Farm Superintendent, has reported that the farm has received 1.43 inches of rain for the month of June (almost 4 inches below the 30-year average). Corn ranges from V3 up to V6 depending on planting date (the majority is about V5 to V6), with many field operations taking place such as side-dressing nitrogen, herbicide applications, etc. Soybeans are anywhere from VC up to V3 or V4. Dry soil conditions have caused some emergence issues in the area, with some replanting that has occurred.”

Central Iowa

Mark Johnson (Region 7): “Corn is really taking off now, with a few fields over waist high. The past 10 days has brought spotty rains with some areas getting over an inch while many areas well below that.  Again, the fields planted under good conditions are handling the weather well and fields planted in less than ideal conditions not looking nearly as good. Last Thursday evening some areas received hail that took a lot of leaf area off plants and in most cases did not take out too much stand. Fields I have visited have for the most part, good healthy growing points and will continue to grow and develop.  Last Friday evening some other areas received some hail and wind. It seems there was more wind damage in this storm than hail damage but most fields didn’t lose enough stand to be a big concern.”


Aaron Saeugling (Region 6):  “Corn is V6 to V8 mostly. Had wind damage and hail in isolated area last week so crop damage and stand loss has occurred in those areas. Most sidedress and herbicide applications are complete in corn now. Soybeans are V2 to V3 in most cases. Herbicide spraying gearing up this week for the most parts soybeans look good. Second cutting hay has begun and will continue for a few weeks depending on the timing of the first cutting. The rain was welcome and should get us through the month of June and hopefully we have cool temps and some moisture in July.”

Southeast and East Central:

Rebecca Vittetoe (Region 8):  “Corn and soybeans have really grown in the last week. The corn is getting that nice deep green color and rows are starting to close. This week we’ll be seeing a lot of POST herbicide applications in soybeans. Some of my counties received some much needed rainfall and others didn’t receive much and could still use some rain. Marion County, northern Lucas County, and parts of Appanoose County had some hail that came with the rain causing crop damage. Regrowth can be seen on corn and soybean plants already. Besides hail damage other issues showing up are soil compaction, poor rooting, and herbicide drift.”

Meaghan Anderson (Region 9): “Corn and soybean growth are rapidly progressing throughout east central Iowa. Most corn has nearly closed the rows and soybeans in narrower rows are approaching that as well, though are much more variable across the area. POST applications should be going on in soybeans soon, if not already. East Central Iowa received a welcome rain late last week, and some areas received more over the weekend. Unfortunately, that rain brought hail with it through portions of Benton, Linn, Buchanan, and Jones counties in my area. Luckily, most corn was left standing and growing points are still intact after the storm. Regrowth has already begun on both corn and soybeans, making defoliation and stand assessments simpler while scouting. You can find more information about this in the "Hail on Corn in Iowa" and "Hail on Soybeans in Iowa" publications from our Extension Store.”

Virgil Schmitt (Region 10): “Most of my area received an inch or more of rain, with a few spots of hail, although the only area I am aware of with major hail damage to crops is on the Delaware County area. Corn is mostly V8 to V10 and soybeans are mostly V2 to V4. I have not seen any soybeans with flowers yet. The most common issues last week continued to be soil compaction and poor rooting. I ran into a few instances of rootless corn. Herbicide drift and application issues were also fairly common.”

Hail damage to corn in Linn County (left photo) and in Emmet County (right photo). Photos by Meaghan Anderson and Paul Kassel. 

Hail damage to soybeans in Marion County (left photo) and Linn County (right photo). Photos by Rebecca Vittetoe and Meaghan Anderson. 


Rebecca Vittetoe Field Agronomist in EC Iowa

Rebecca Vittetoe is an extension field agronomist in east central Iowa. Educational programs are available for farmers, agribusiness, pesticide applicators, and certified crop advisors.

Areas of expertise include agronomy, field crop production and management of corn, soybeans, and...