Corn planting is under way in earnest in Illinois. In just one week is has gone from a field here or there – amounting to zero in terms of statistical significance – to 15 percent of the expected acreage. This is mainly due to warm and dry weather that allowed farmers to get their equipment into the fields, except in Southern Illinois, where corn planting has yet to register.
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“That’s the only area where (farmers) haven’t planted any yet. The rest of (the state) was dry and also we had some warmer weather. We were above normal last week and so everybody was out getting the planters rolling,” said USDA crop statistician Todd Ballard.
The 15 percent statewide figure for corn is ahead of last year at this time, when only 4 percent as planted, but behind the five-year average of 21 percent.
In terms of topsoil moisture, 70 percent of fields have adequate topsoil moisture, while 22 percent have surplus, mainly in Southern Illinois.