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July 9, 2019

U.S. Corn Condition Improves Slightly, Soybeans Decline Slightly

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

Corn - The 2019 U.S. corn condition improved 1% last week to 57% rated good to excellent. Eleven states indicated that the corn condition improved last week and 6 states indicated that the corn condition declined with one state unchanged. Most of the improvements were found in the western and northwestern Corn Belt while most of the declines were found in the central Corn Belt. The top five rated corn states are: Colorado, Tennessee, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, and North Dakota. The five lowest rated corn states are: Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Illinois, and Indiana.

The slight improvement in the corn condition is the result of the warmer and dryer weather. There are still approximately 1.8 million acres of corn that has not emerged and it is already the second week of July! The later planted corn is up to two months behind in its development and it is going to need all the help it can get in order to reach maturity before the first frost.

Soybeans - The 2019 U.S. soybean condition declined 1% last week to 53% rated good to excellent. Ten states indicated that the soybean condition improved last week and 7 states indicated that the soybean condition declined last week with 1 unchanged. Most of the improvements were found in the western and southern locations while most of the declines were found in the central Corn Belt. The top five rated soybean states are: Tennessee, Nebraska, Kentucky, North Dakota, and Wisconsin. The five lowest rated soybean states are: Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, and Michigan.

The warmer and dryer weather helped some of the soybeans, but continued saturated conditions are still causing problems especially for the later planted soybeans. Continued warm weather would be beneficial if it is accompanied by moderate rainfall. Any prolonged period of dry weather would not be beneficial for the late planted soybeans that are very small. Their shallow root system could be "stuck" in the dry topsoil.

Soil Moisture - The nation's topsoil dried out some more last week with only 3 states indicating that the soils got wetter last week and 15 states indicating that the soils got dryer last week. The only states with wetter conditions were Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota. All the other states indicated dryer conditions. The five wettest states are: Kansas, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Ohio. The five driest states are: North Carolina, Arkansas, Louisiana, North Dakota, and Mississippi.

With the hotter temperatures last week and limited shower activity, it is no surprise that the topsoil dried out across most of the Corn Belt. In fact, on our weekend trip across northern Illinois we saw very little standing water, but we did see a lot of holes in the fields where previous standing water had drowned out the crops.

The driest region of the country is across the south and the southeast. Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi are generally 20-30% short to very short on soil moisture, whereas Alabama and Georgia are generally 40-50% short or very short on soil moisture.