All the past week needed was a little rain, and it could have been perfect for Illinois farmers. The USDA’s Illinois statistician-in-chief, Brad Schwab, says reading the weekly crop progress and weather report on a rainy Monday afternoon in Springfield gives him hope: “The dry conditions hopefully have been partially alleviated with the rains that blanketed the state. I don’t know how far north they went, but I know the central part and on down south did get some rain. It may have been too quick, not giving it really a chance to soak in if it came down hard, as it looked like on the radar it may have, but I’m sure the farmers will take whatever they can get.”
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Corn is up to 29 inches on average, soybeans are 99 percent planted – both well ahead of recent years. Wheat is exceptionally ahead of average, with about half the crop harvested. A normal year would show the wheat harvest just beginning about now.