Regional update: Corn and soybean planting progressing following period of cool and wet weather across the state

May 10, 2017 8:43 AM
Blog Post

#Plant17 is progressing across Iowa. Following a period of cooler and wetter weather, most farmers have been able to get back in the fields over the weekend and either resume or start planting. According to Monday’s USDA Crop Progress report, Iowa had 52% corn planted and 19% of soybeans for the week ending of May 7, 2017. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach field agronomists report planting progress and field conditions in their respected regions.  

Northwest Iowa

Joel DeJong (Region 1): “Planting has been very active in the last few days in this region. I think about two-thirds of the corn is now in the ground as of Monday night (May 8), and I know some have started on soybeans. Emergence of the very early corn has been pretty good, although I have had a couple of calls indicating a little replanting will occur – from the extended cold periods these seeds experienced. But, most seem to be OK. The corn planted in the April 23 to April 24 window has not emerged yet, so we will see.”

Paul Kassel (Region 2): “A quick text message survey across my area shows that corn planting is about 75% complete. Corn planting is nearing completion in parts of Kossuth County for example. The progress is a little further behind in parts of Clay and Dickinson counties. However, I would expect that most areas would have corn planting completed by later this week. Soybean planting is 5 to 10% complete. I would expect some really good progress on soybean planting by the end of the week.”

A farmer in Clay county planting corn in a fall strip tilled field. Photo by: Paul Kassel

North Central Iowa

Angie Rieck-Hinz (Region 3): “Corn planted April 11 through April 14 took nearly three weeks to emerge in some locations. Cold and wet conditions hampered emergence and led to some uneven emergence. On April 26/April 27 we saw some temperatures as low as 26 to 28 degrees causing some frost damaged leaves on corn that was emerged by that time. Wet conditions from April 27 through May 1 kept people out of the field until about May 5 when planting resumed. I would estimate corn planting at about 80% for the southern half of my area and 50% in the northern part of my area. There are some widespread areas with beans planted, my estimate would be about 20% as of May 8.” 

Northeast Iowa

Terry Basol (Region 4): “Growers were able to get back into the fields starting last week Thursday here in NE Iowa. Prior to that time period, we only had about 10% of the corn planted for this area of the state. The weather has cooperated well for farmers here in NE Iowa to help them continue field operations and planting since Thursday, with an estimated 40 to 50% of the corn planted (possibly more in certain areas) as of Monday, May 8. Some growers in the southern part of the territory have just started to plant soybeans, but still under 10% as of Monday. According to the Iowa Environmental Mesonet (IEM), the research and demonstration farm here at Nashua received 3.98” (almost 4 inches) of rainfall for the month of April. The last major rainfall event occurred on April 30 and May 1, where a total of 1.25” of rain was received over those couple of days.”

Southwest and West Central

Aaron Saeugling (Region 6): “In southwest Iowa, Corn is approximately 90% planted, and corn planted around April 17 to 21 is now emerging. It is a little yellow, but warmer temperatures and sunshine should help with this. Soybean planting ramped up hard over the weekend.  At this point, I would estimate about 40% of the soybeans are in the ground.  We had isolate showers Sunday evening. Alfalfa is looking good, and I will be taking PEAQ measurements (Predictive Equations of Alfalfa Quality) this week.”

Farmers can use PEAQ measurements to help determine when to take the first cutting with alfalfa. Photo by Aaron Saeugling

Clark McGrath: “Corn planting is about 85 to 90% done, but need a stretch of drying days to finish the last 10 to 15%. A lot of the corn that was planted around the April 23 to April 28 window is up or close to being up. The stands are looking good considering the rough weather we had. Soybeans are a little bit more variable, but about a third or better are in. A lot of spraying has gone on with the warmer temperatures. The winter and spring annuals are getting pretty large, so a quick reminder to double check the products and rates to ensure good control and also watch wind speed and direction.”    

Central Iowa

Mark Johnson (Region 7): “Then there was very little planting until May 5, and it really took off on May 7. I have not received a single call concerning germination or emergence problems.  I have gotten a couple of calls letting me know that their early (April 13/April 14) planted corn is looking good.”

Southeast and East Central

Rebecca Vittetoe (Region 8): “Farmers were able to get back in the field over the weekend. Corn planting is progressing right along and wrapping up in areas. Early planted corn is emerged. Some of the emerged corn got a little frosted on the leaves last week, but it should recover just fine. Continue to monitor crop emergence and keep your eyes open for seedling diseases. Most farmers are just now gearing up on planting beans. Planting progress is a little slower in my western counties, as they’ve been a little wetter and got some more rain Monday (May 8) morning.”

Meaghan Anderson (Region 9): “The break from rain and some warm weather finally let farmers back into the field late last week and over the weekend. I saw a huge flurry of activity in Linn, Iowa, Benton, and Tama counties over the weekend. Corn planting is nearly finished, but many fields of corn stubble are still waiting for soybeans. Some corn is beginning to emerge in the area and looks really good considering the cool and wet conditions recently. After emergence, check for a good stand with even emergence. In the next few weeks, scouting for early-season insect pests and diseases (especially in no-till and cover cropped fields) will be important to make sure the corn crop gets off to a good start.”

Corn planted April 12 in SE Iowa showing a little frost damage on the leaves, but overall looking pretty good. Photo by Meaghan Anderson

Virgil Schmitt (Region 10): “Corn is 90(+) % planted and soybeans are about 10 to 20% planted. More planting has been done in my southern counties compared to my more northern counties. So far everything is looking good.”

Find your local ISU Extension and Outreach field agronomist here!



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...