Desperately needed rain finally arrived in many areas during the week, according to the Indiana Field Office of USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. However, accumulations were not nearly enough to break the ongoing drought conditions gripping the state. Soybeans, hay crops and pastures will benefit from the rains, but a high percentage of the corn acreage has already moved past the pollination stage of development which will limit improvements that moisture can bring at this point. The Farm Service Agency (FSA) designated an additional 14 counties in Indiana as natural disaster areas bringing the total to 50. Farmers in these 50 counties along with another 24 contiguous counties may now be eligible for low interest emergency loans to help recover from financial losses due to the drought.
FIELD CROPS REPORT
There were 5.9 days suitable for field work during the week. Ninety percent of the corn acreage has silked compared with 53 percent last year and 62 percent for the 5-year average. Twenty percent of the corn is in dough compared to 0 percent last year and 4 percent for the 5-year average. Corn condition deteriorated slightly and is now rated 7 percent good to excellent compared with 46 percent last year at this time. National corn condition also slid from 31 percent last week to 26 percent good to excellent this week.
Seventy-eight percent of the soybean acreage is blooming compared with 45 percent last year and 54 percent for the 5-year average. Thirty-two percent of the soybean acreage is setting pods compared with 5 percent last year and 13 percent for the 5-year average. Soybean condition showed some improvement and is now rated 12 percent good to excellent compared with 47 percent last year at this time. National condition fell 3 points from 34 to 31 percent good to excellent.
Major activities during the week included: scouting fields for insects and diseases, checking pollination of corn acreage, spraying for spider mites, taking care of livestock, monitoring irrigation systems and attending county 4-H fairs.
LIVESTOCK, PASTURE AND RANGE REPORT
The rain brought some relief to livestock during the week. Pastures have been hit very hard by the drought and are only rated to be in 1 percent good to excellent condition compared with 42 percent last year at this time.
Source: Indiana NASS