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|Mother Nature Comes Through for Illinois Farmers
|Farmers got a rare, nearly perfect week of weather last week leading up to the fall harvest in Illinois.
The average temperature of 69.1 degrees was just about on the mark for this time of the year, and the state received an average of one-tenth of an inch of rain, which helped promote the maturing of corn and soybeans. The USDA's weekly crop report shows 6 percent of the corn crop is now mature and 3 percent of the soybeans are shedding leaves. The percentages were 14 and 6 percent respectively last year.
Brad Schwab, director of the Illinois Field Office for the National Ag Statistics Service, says last week was among the best in 2009 for crop progress. "The fact that (Illinois) didn't have a lot of rain was a good thing for the soybeans, at least those that were starting to show signs of the white mold and all."
The white mold was showing up in soybean fields across the state because of cool, damp weather that's basically been the theme this summer.
Crop progress in western Illinois is a little behind the state averages. Nearly half of the region's corn is in the dough stage and just 1 percent is mature. The soybeans in the west crop reporting district are 12 percent turning yellow and 1 percent mature.
The USDA says the state's corn is rated at 64 percent good or excellent condition, while 9 percent is poor or very poor. Soybeans are rated at 61 percent good or excellent and 8 percent poor or very poor.
Topsoil moisture in western Illinois is rated at 98 percent adequate or surplus compared to 79 percent for the state as a whole. The driest region is the east reporting district, where farm fields are rated at 51 percent short or very short of moisture.
|09 18 09 by Newsroom
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