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Rain slows fieldwork, but Iowa harvest still ahead of schedule

Rain slows fieldwork, but Iowa harvest still ahead of schedule

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The Iowa harvest continues ahead of normal with 60% of Iowa’s corn and 83% of soybeans harvested despite rainfall last week, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“An active weather pattern returned to Iowa this past week, which brought much needed rainfall across the state,” Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig said. “Soybean harvest continues to make significant progress and should be wrapping up soon despite a soggy forecast.”

Both the corn and bean harvests are running ahead of the five-year average — corn by a week and beans by six days, the USDA said.

Corn growers in northeast and south central Iowa have more than half their crops remaining to be harvested. Moisture content of field corn being harvested for grain was 18%, unchanged from last week.

Although the soybean harvest in the southern third of the state is lagging, farmers in each of the southern districts harvested 18% or more of their soybean crop during the past week.

Most Iowa weather stations reported near-average rain totals with above-average rain falling in the northwest and southwest corners, according to Justin Glisan, state climatologist. Weekly rain totals ranged from 0.02 inch in Decorah to 2.84 inches at Fort Madison. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.65 inch while the normal is 0.59 inch.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 7% very short, 23% short, 63% adequate and 7% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 14% very short, 31% short, 53% adequate and 2% surplus.

Above-average temperatures persisted statewide, but it was not as warm as the preceding weeks. The statewide average temperature was 50.5 degrees, 1.7 degrees above normal.

Multiple stations observed a high temperature of 79 degrees Oct. 18 and 19, which was, on average, 18 degrees above normal. Elkader and Mason City Municipal Airport reported the week’s low temperature of 23 degrees Oct. 23, on average 11 degrees below normal.

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