Proof of near ideal corn growing conditions in MN this spring, USDA reports

From Internet sources

The latest crop weather reports from the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service rates 92 percent of Minnesota’s corn crop as being in good or excellent condition.

The NASS report quantifies the Minnesota corn and soybean crops in this way: “Corn was 98 percent emerged with an average height of 8 inches.  Soybeans were 98 percent planted and 83 percent emerged with an average height of 3 inches.  Corn condition was rated 92 percent good to excellent, unchanged from the previous reporting period, while soybeans were rated 93 percent good to excellent versus 92 percent during the previous reporting period.”

To give perspective on the condition rating, nationally, NASS observers rated 76 percent of the corn crop as being in good or excellent condition. This compares to a national rating for the same date in 2009 of 69 percent good or excellent. Wisconsin is the only state with a crop rated higher—97 percent in good or excellent condition. Also close to the top in good or excellent ratings are North Dakota (89 percent) and Iowa (88 percent).

Elevated temperatures in May have likely played a key role, along with timely rains. These built nicely on the early fair, dry conditions this spring that allowed farmers to get an early start particularly on corn planting.

The latest NASS-Minnesota report provided a broader picture of weather conditions over the past 21 days:  “As of May 31st, temperatures cooled to their seasonal averages after nearly two weeks of above normal temperatures.   Repeated light rains prevailed during the week.  South central and southeast regions of the state received over 1.3 inches, on average, with isolated reports of hail.  Topsoil moisture supplies were rated 87 percent adequate to surplus compared to 89 percent in the previous reporting period.”

Most locations throughout the state have surpassed the average accumulation of heating units, termed Growing Degree Days. The West Central region lags, but only slightly, with locations like Browns Valley and Alexandria being no more than a few days behind the normal level of heat units.

On a seasonal basis, most locations around the state had received between one and two fewer inches of rain than in an average year, as of Sunday, June 6. However, moisture in the top soil is adequate in four out of five acres across the state, and rains on Monday and Tuesday may help to alleviate the shortage being experienced across an estimated 13 percent of Minnesota.

A pdf of the Minnesota USDA crop report can be found at

A text version of the report is available at


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