Corn is hitting the final stretch, and in better condition than any recent crop year

 from Internet sources

Observers around the state report that a small percentage of corn has reached full maturity in Minnesota, well ahead of average dates, due to “nearly ideal growing conditions” (true across the entire Corn Belt) throughout the season, including warmer temperatures and timely rain.

“This is shaping up to be one of the best corn crops ever produced in the United States,” said DeVonna Zeug, a farmer in Walnut Grove, Minnesota and president of Minnesota Corn Growers Association. “Each year we are producing more food and the same or fewer acres of land, thanks to the great contributions of crop science, in partnership with the continuing hard work of the American farmer. Anyone who says that there won’t be enough food or that food and farm-based energy are in competition just doesn’t have the facts. This will be among the biggest corn crops in US history and every segment of the market—animal feed, human food and energy will have a more than ample supply.”

Observers with the USDA find that 91 percent of the state’s corn crop can be rated good or excellent. This compares to 70 percent of the crop across the 18 major corn-producing states.

“Corn progress continued ahead of average. “ according to the latest crop weather report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service –Minnesota office. They go on to report, “Ninety-five percent of corn was in the dough stage, compared to 48 percent last year and 79 percent average.  Corn in the dent stage jumped 33 points this week to 68 percent, compared to 6 percent last year and 48 percent average.  Two percent of corn reached the mature stage, compared to 0 percent last year and 3 percent average.

At the Southern Research and Outreach Center of University of Minnesota, in Waseca, they report some 94-day maturity corn has reached full maturity, but before operators begin dreaming of an earlier harvest, the grain remains fairly high moisture, at 30 percent.

“Warm and wet describes this past week’s weather. Air temps averaged 71.5 degrees – – – well above the long-term average of 66.1 degrees. Growing degree units (GDUs) totaled 148 (21 above normal) and 2283 (8% above normal) since May 1. This is in stark contrast to 2009 when 2283 GDUs were not received until October 5 and even with the late frost on Oct. 10, only 2292 were recorded for the year. On average 2283 is reached on Sept. 12. After 16 days with <0.2” rain, 1.35” was received in the last two days,” reported Tom Hoverstad and Gyles Randall, scientists at the Waseca station. They conclude, “The hot temperatures, dry surface soils, and high winds rapidly moved corn and soybeans along toward maturity this week. Some early maturity corn (94-day) planted in late April has already reached physiological maturity. Hand shelled samples of grain from plots that had reached maturity were at 30% grain moisture.”

 The USDA reported that the rapid progress of the corn crop was being found across the entire Corn Belt.

 “Nearly ideal growing conditions throughout the major corn-producing areas of the Nation continued to promote rapid development of this year’s crop. By August 29, corn at or beyond the dough stage had advanced to 94 percent complete, 21 percentage points ahead of last year and 8 percentage points ahead of the 5-year average. Double-digit progress was evident in 14 of the 18 major estimating States during the week and by week’s end, 73 percent of this year’s corn acreage was at or beyond the dented stage, 43 percentage points, or over 18 days, ahead of last year and 18 percentage points ahead of the 5-year average. Denting progress in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, and Minnesota was 52 percentage points or more ahead of last year and 20 percentage points or more ahead of the 5-year average.

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