Illinois weather and crops
The Illinois Department of Agriculture released its weekly agricultural summary Aug. 16.
Temperatures continued the summer long pattern of above normal last week pushing the corn crop maturity rapidly ahead. Reports were received of producers preparing for an early corn harvest after a long week of triple digit heat indexes and high nighttime temperatures. There were 5.5 days suitable for fieldwork last week across the state. The corn crop has advanced to 51 percent dented compared to the average of 29 percent. Beneficial rains fell sporadically across the state from a few tenths to a few inches. The largest rainfall accumulations were recorded in the northwest and west districts where some rivers were overflowing. Rains at this point are needed in many areas to help soybeans fill pods and will help with corn grain weight but will not be as helpful to the corn as it will be to the soybean crop.
Topsoil moisture was rated at 8 percent very short, 20 percent short, 62
percent adequate, and 10 percent surplus. Soybean diseases are starting to show up with the primary concern coming from sudden death syndrome. Farmers were busy last week mowing waterways, baling hay, spraying fungicides and insecticides, chopping silage, and attending the Illinois State Fair.
In the northwest division of the state where Mercer County lies, there were 4.0 days suitable for fieldwork. The topsoil moisture percentage was listed as 81 percent adequate, 16 percent surplus and three percent short.