Very dry conditions with below average temperatures dominated the weather pattern during the week, with some patchy frost reported late in the week, according to USDA NASS, Great Lakes Regional Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions rated short to very short increased 10 percentage points from the previous week.
The average temperature for the week was 60.9 degrees Fahrenheit, 4.4 degrees below normal for the State. The amount of rainfall varied from none to 0.43 inches over the week. The statewide average precipitation was 0.01 inches. There were 6.8 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending September 20.
The dry weather this week pushed crops rapidly towards maturity and aided early row crop harvest progress. The excessively dry conditions negatively affected row crop grain fill in some areas and caused dust and combine fire concerns.
Row crop harvest began in southern Indiana and a few locations elsewhere, but widespread harvest was not expected for several weeks as producers waited for crops to dry down to acceptable moisture levels.
By week’s end, half of the corn acreage was rated mature, 1 percentage point behind the 5-year average. Soybeans were dropping leaves on 64 percent of the acreage, 12 points ahead of the 5-year average.
Corn silage and seed corn harvests also continued this week, benefitting from the dry conditions. Hay harvesting was beginning to wrap up in some areas and State level harvest progress ended the week ahead of normal.
Livestock were reportedly in good condition despite declining pastures conditions, as pasture regrowth was beginning to slow and head into winter dormancy.
Other activities during the week included applying herbicides, preparing equipment for harvest, buying cover crop seed, and harvesting pumpkins.
Harvested for grain: 5%
Harvested for silage: 82%
Condition: 61% G/E
Dropping leaves: 64%
Soybeans harvest: 4%