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November 17, 2017

10/24/2017 1:57:00 PM
Rains slowing fieldwork with harvest half done
Corn harvest is about halfway completed throughout the state after being delayed by recent rains.

Cooler temperatures and rainfall were common in Crawford County and across the state during the past two weeks. As a result, there only 3.7 days were suitable for fieldwork last week.

Statewide, the average temperature was 61.8 degrees, 5.9 degrees above normal. Precipitation averaged 2.61 inches, 2.14 inches above normal.

Locally, after weeks of little or no precipitation, light showers became an almost daily occurance. Still, only .34 inch of rain fell here last week and only .52 inch has been reported for the entire month to date.

Topsoil moisture supply was rated at 12 percent very short, 19 percent short, 56 percent adequate and 13 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supply was rated at 11 percent very short, 30 percent short, 55 percent adequate and 4 percent surplus.

Meanwhile, corn harvest was 47 percent complete, compared to 64 percent for the five-year average. Corn in the mature stage was at 95 percent, compared to 100 percent last year.

Corn condition was rated 4 percent very poor, 7 percent poor, 26 percent fair, 48 percent good and 15 percent excellent.

Illinois farmers planted an estimated 11.2 million acres in corn this year, down 3 percent from last year. It is anticipated that they will harvest 11.05 million acres, up 1 percent from a previous forecast but down 3 percent from 2016.

Based on Oct. 1 conditions, the Illinois corn yield is forecast at 192 bushels per acre, up 3 bushels from the previous forecast but down 5 bushels from 2016.

Production is forecast at 2.12 billion bushels, down 6 percent from last year's production. If realized, this would be the third highest yield on record.

Soybean harvest was 63 percent complete, compared to 55 percent last year. Beans dropping leaves were at 94 percent, compared to 96 percent last year.

Farmers planted an estimated 10.6 million acres in soybeans, up 5 percent from last year. Harvested area, forecast at 10.54 million acres, is up 5 percent from 2016.

The state bean yield is forecast at 57 bushels per acre, down 1 bushel from the previous forecast and down 2 bushels from 2016. Production is forecast at 601 million bushels, up 1 percent from 2016 and the highest production level on record for Illinois.

Winter wheat planted was at 51 percent, compared to 40 percent last year. Winter wheat emerged was at 13 percent, compared to the average of 15 percent.

Pasture and range condition was rated 12 percent very poor, 26 percent poor, 40 percent fair, 21 percent good and 1 percent excellent.

State farmers are also expected to harvest 260,000 acres of alfalfa this year, 13 percent more than in 2016.

The Illinois alfalfa yield is forecast at 3.1 tons per acre, down 0.8 ton from the previous year. Production is forecast at 806,000 tons, 10 percent below 2016.

Another 240,000 acres of other varieties of hay is also expected to be harvested, down 4 percent from 2016. These acres are expected to yield 2.4 tons of hay each, unchanged from the previous year.

Production is estimated at 576,000 tons, 4 percent below 2016.

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