Ag Weather Forum

Wide Weather Variety Keeps Harvest Mixed

Mike Palmerino
By  Mike Palmerino , DTN Senior Ag Meteorologist
It's taken awhile, but the lights are finally about to go out on U.S. corn harvest 2017. (Photo by Nicholas Fontenot)

The corn harvest is nearing completion in much of the Midwest.

Corn harvest progress in the western Midwest and Illinois is now running at 90 percent complete or better as weather conditions have generally been favorable. With continued favorable harvest weather this week producers should be finishing up in the western Midwest.

It is a different story in the eastern Midwest, where wet weather continues to disrupt harvest. Indiana is 87 percent complete, Ohio only 79 percent, Michigan just 76 percent, and Wisconsin at only 69 percent complete with corn harvest. The weather has been so poor in these states that there are even still some soybeans left in the fields. The weather pattern looks drier for harvest this week. However, with saturated soils and poor drying conditions at this time of the year due to the low sun angle, harvest progress may remain slow. Much of the eastern Midwest, including all of Michigan, has had from 150 percent to more than 300 percent of average precipitation in the past 30 days.

Elsewhere, harvest progress remains slow in North Dakota as producers are waiting for the crop to dry in the field before harvesting. The overall weather pattern looks more favorable this week, but seasonal lack of intense sunlight makes drying difficult to accomplish. Some corn may be left out in the fields this winter to be harvested in the spring.

In the Southern Plains, much drier weather in Oklahoma and west Texas is beginning to affect winter wheat ratings. The percent rated good to excellent is down 5 points in Texas and 3 points in Oklahoma from a week ago. It has been 48 days since the Oklahoma Panhandle has seen a quarter-inch or more of rain in a single day. In Kansas, wheat crop ratings remain stable although soils are trending drier. The next week will be dry with above to above to much above normal temperatures. This should lead to further reduction in ratings for Oklahoma and west Texas, with some reduction likely showing up in Kansas.

In South America, weather conditions appear quite favorable at this time. The rainy season has arrived in central Brazil with producers rushing to get the remaining soybeans planted to allow for as much second-crop corn acreage as possible to be planted following the soybean harvest. Southern Brazil has had some wet conditions at times, which disrupted planting. However, conditions are favorable for developing crops.

Farther south, a generally-favorable trend has been in effect for row crop planting and development in central Argentina. At this point, there is no sign of any significant dryness developing due to La Nina. However, we will continue to watch this situation closely.

Mike Palmerino



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