Map: Early Midwest Planting Delays Appear Likely

It’s still early, but planting delays are looking more and more likely in parts of the Corn Belt – especially considering the latest forecasts.

As can be seen on the map below, soil moisture conditions are still wetter than average nearly across the whole region ranging from wet but manageable in the best cases, to needing considerable drying in the worst. The Northern Plains and Minnesota still seem the worst off for wetness.

Preliminary field work and a little early planting has started in southern and central Corn Belt areas, although it remains too early or wet in most other areas. Additionally, North Dakota (and a few other areas) are still trying to get crops off from last fall.

Meanwhile, forecasts suggest producers in the main Midwest production region may need to further delay their planting plans. An intensifying storm system is expected to bring cold temperatures and the potential for wind-driven snow in some areas of the Midwest by early next week. Stress on livestock is expected, along with the possibility of cold weather damage to winter wheat crops. The outlook for April 13 -17 calls for the strong likelihood of continued below-normal temperatures nearly nationwide as well.

The USDA’s weekly crop report is expected to provide the first estimate of 2020 U.S. corn planting progress on Monday. On average, just over one-quarter of the American corn crop is typically in the ground by the end of April, and about two-thirds by the middle of May.

U.S. soil moisture

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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