Iowa Crops and Weather Report

Staff Writer
Story City Herald

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey commented Monday (Aug. 8) on the Iowa Crops and Weather report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service. The report is released weekly from April through October.

“We continue to see crops in good condition across the state, with 83 percent of corn and 82 percent soybeans rated in good or excellent condition,” Northey said.

The weekly report is also available on the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship’s website at or on USDA’s site at The report summary follows here:


Frequent but scattered precipitation throughout the week allowed Iowa farmers 5.1 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending August 7, 2016, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Activities for the week included cutting hay and fungicide and insecticide applications.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 1 percent very short, 11 percent short, 83 percent adequate and 5 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 2 percent very short, 10 percent short, 83 percent adequate and 5 percent surplus. South central and southeast Iowa reported the lowest levels of subsoil moisture with over one-quarter short to very short.

Ninety-eight percent of the corn crop reached the silking stage, 11 days ahead of normal. Sixty-one percent reached the dough stage, 5 days ahead of last year and 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Seven percent of Iowa’s corn crop reached the dent stage. Corn condition rated 83 percent good to excellent. Soybeans blooming reached 94 percent, 6 days ahead of the previous year. Seventy-nine percent of soybeans were setting pods, one week ahead of normal. Soybean condition rated 82 percent good to excellent. Ninety percent of the oat crop for grain or seed has been harvested.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 97 percent, more than 2 weeks ahead of last year and 9 days ahead of normal. The third cutting of alfalfa hay was 42 percent complete, 6 days ahead of average. Hay condition rated 73 percent good to excellent, while pasture condition rated 62 percent good to excellent. Frequent rains have been good for pastures, but made it difficult to cut and bale hay. Livestock were reported to be in good condition with very little stress.


—by Harry Hillaker, State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship

Very warm and humid weather prevailed from Monday (1st) through Thursday (4th). The hottest weather was on Thursday when actual temperatures peaked at 96 degrees at Lamoni while the heat index reached 111 degrees at Newton, Perry and Shenandoah. Drier and cooler weather finished out the week with Sheldon and Spencer recording Saturday (6th) morning lows of 50 degrees. Temperatures for the week as a whole averaged 0.7 degrees above normal although much of far southern Iowa averaged a little cooler than usual thanks to heavier rainfall in that area. Showers and thunderstorms were widespread over about the southwest one-half of Iowa on both Monday (1st) morning and Tuesday (2nd) morning. Heavy rains of two to four inches were common from Carroll County to Ringgold County on Monday with one to three inch amounts common from near Knoxville south to Centerville and Bloomfield on Tuesday. The most widespread rains of the week came on Thursday (4th) and Thursday night with rain falling over most of the southeast three-fourths of the state. High winds accompanied the Thursday storms over parts of central and northeastern Iowa. Weekly rain totals varied from only sprinkles at Swea City and Estherville to 4.83 inches at Mount Ayr and 4.68 inches at Creston. The statewide average precipitation was 1.25 inches while normal for the week is 0.96 inches.