It’s hard to find a silver lining this farming season. “We always say that a soybean crop is made in August,” says Brad Schwab, “but we’re certainly going to need some rain shortly to bring the soybean crop along, or at least give it some hope.

Schwab is director of the Illinois field office of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. The weekly crop progress report shows no corn or soybeans in excellent condition, with 71 percent of the corn and 56 percent of the soybeans poor or very poor.

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Temperatures last week in Illinois averaged 81.6 degrees; the average is 75. Precipitation averaged 31/100 of an inch, more than half an inch below normal.

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