There’s no improvement this week in Illinois’ farm fields. Rainfall last week was .28 inches, and a lot of that fell not on corn and bean fields but on the streets of Chicago. “That was the worst place it could have landed as far as benefitting the farmers in Illinois,” said USDA crop statistician Brad Schwab, who says thunderstorms don’t help alleviate drought anyway.
Click here for summary
“As dry as it is, when you get a thunderstorm that blows through and it only rains for two-three minutes real hard, a lot of that runs off and it just doesn’t benefit the crops that much,” he said. Normal rainfall for the week would have been .96 inches. Across the state, topsoil moisture is 80 percent very short, 19 percent short. Corn condition is 66 percent poor or very poor. Beans are 49 percent poor or very poor, 38 percent fair.
As for crop progress, of the corn that’s still standing, 98 percent is silked, up from 93 percent the week prior, ahead of 2011 (79 percent) and the five-year average (74 percent), due to early planting. Thirty-eight percent of corn is in the dough stage, which is ahead of last year (12 percent) and the five-year average (16 percent). Forty percent of soybeans are setting pods; 84 percent are blooming.