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Erin Brown/Grand Vale Creative

Corn harvest progresses

Despite early November snow in parts of the Upper Midwest, the region's corn crop continues to come off.

Corn harvest progressed substantially in the week ending Nov. 12, according to the weekly crop progress report released Nov. 13 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Even so, the corn harvest pace in North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota still trail their respective five-year averages.

In North Dakota, 76 percent of the corn crop was harvested on Nov. 12, up from 59 percent a week earlier but down from the Nov. 12 five-year average of 85 percent.

In South Dakota, 82 percent of the corn crop was harvested on Nov. 12. That's up from 61 percent a week earlier but down from the Nov. 12 five-year average of 90 percent.

Minnesota farmers had harvested 79 percent of their corn on Nov. 12, up from 60 percent a week earlier but down from the Nov. 12 five-year average of 94 percent.

Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota are among the 18 states monitored for the weekly crop progress report. The 18 — which accounted for 94 percent of 2016 U.S. harvested corn acres — had harvested a combined 83 percent of their corn on Nov. 12, compared with 70 percent a week earlier. The Nov. 12 five-year average for the 18 states is 91 percent.

The sunflower harvest in North Dakota and South Dakota — the two states dominate U.S. production of the crop — made considerable progress in the past week, too.

In South Dakota, 81 percent of the sunflower crop was harvested on Nov. 12, up from 90 percent a week earlier. The Nov. 12 five-year average also is 81 percent.

North Dakota farmers had harvested 81 percent of their sunflowers on Nov. 12, as well. That compared with 72 percent a week earlier and the Nov. 12 five-year average of 78 percent.

The report also showed that the Upper Midwest soybean and sugar beet harvests and winter wheat planting are wrapped up, or virtually so.

Much of the Upper Midwest continues to be short of both top- and subsoil moisture, the new crop progress report shows.

Montana is hit particularly hard, with 45 percent of the state short or very short of topsoil moisture and 68 percent of the state short or very short of subsoil moisture.

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