In this week’s report, the USDA reduced the national corn condition Rating by three points – in the combined categories “good” to “excellent” to 58 percent. In the I-80 corridor, Nebraska lost four points and the important state of Iowa lost three points. However, at the east end of the corridor, Ohio improved by three percentage points. Outside the corridor, conditions quickly went downhill as North Dakota slipped seven points while South Dakota and Kansas both lost six points. The best performer was Colorado, up eight points from last week.
The National soybean condition The rating dropped one point to 59 percent good to excellent. In the I-80 corridor, Nebraska lost three points and Iowa lost two points. On the other hand, Indiana picked up three points thanks to favorable rainfall last week. Just like with corn, the Northern Plains really struggled, with South Dakota cutting five points and North Dakota losing four points. The biggest drop in condition, however, came from Michigan, which posted a big drop of seven points.
cotton condition nationally fell seven points this week, dragging it down to just 31 percent good-to-excellent. A big part of the reason is that the largest producing state, Texas, took another big hit when its rating dropped a whopping 11 points. Alabama attempted to hold the average by showing a seven-point improvement in its condition. Some of the other big moves included a six-point drop from Missouri and a five-point drop from South Carolina.
Grain millet (milo) state nationwide even improved by a modest percentage point in the categories good to excellent. Nebraska took a huge toll on its harvest as it was down 11 points in a week. But that’s offset by neighboring Colorado, which is up 11 points this week.
rice condition Across the country, there was an average improvement of one point compared to last week, representing a 74 percent improvement from good to excellent. However, rice valuations will mean less now as the harvest gets underway. California, where most of the rice is irrigated, saw its condition drop 10 points since last week. Missouri was down five points. On the plus side, Mississippi saw an eight-point improvement.
rice harvest appears in this week’s report with an initial progress score of five percent completion. The only two states that appear on the rice harvest list are Texas, which is 25 percent complete, and Louisiana, which is 21 percent complete.
peanut condition nationally, it declined one point on average this week to 70 percent good to excellent. By far the biggest change among the top-producing states was reported in North Carolina, which posted a massive 16-point drop over the past seven days. Florida managed to move up seven points in the past week.
The National state of spring wheat The rating had another big drop this week, dropping six points to 64 percent from good to excellent. As the harvest gets underway in many areas, all major states’ ratings declined except for Washington State, which remained stable. Keep in mind that condition ratings are of little value when the crops are maturing and the combines are starting to roll. This could be the last spring wheat health report for this season.
Speaking of Spring harvest of wheat, the first crop progress report of the year, was attached to this report and showed that nine percent of the crop had already been removed from the field. South Dakota made tremendous progress last week, harvesting 28 percent of its acreage to bring its total acreage to 54 percent already! Montana also made very good progress as the percentage of completion increased to 22 percent.
Harvest of winter wheat comes down the home stretch with nationwide 86 percent completion on Sunday, compared to the five-year average of 91 percent. The Plains states are basically done, with just some cleanup left to do in Nebraska and South Dakota.
grazing conditions in the Plains continued their nosedive in the good to very good ratings. Texas has remained stable, but only because it has only a single percentage point in the good to excellent categories. Ninety percent (!) of Texas rangeland falls into the poor to very poor categories. All other Plains states posted additional declines, with Kansas falling five points. Oklahoma and Nebraska retreated at four. The biggest drop in Heartland was in Wyoming, where the pasture score fell 13 points.
In which topsoil moisture deficit category (broadly considered a measure of the top four inches of soil representing the seeding and germination zone), Texas took the top spot for drought with 83 percent of its acres reportedly falling in the short to very short categories. Nevada comes second with 80 percent. Among the more notable moves on this list is Kansas, which reported a 14 percentage point rise in the driest categories, while Montana and Wyoming both saw their deficit ratings rise nine points.
In which Subsoil Moisture Deficit category (designated to measure deep soil moisture to within a few feet where plant roots would extend downward), Texas briefly to very briefly held the top spot with a score of 87 percent. Montana moves up to second with 86 percent. Wyoming saw its deficit rating rise nine points since last week. On a positive note, Nevada used the recent monsoon rains to see its subsurface conditions improve five points since the last report.