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Corn was yielding north of 200 bushels per acre in this field at the Jennen farm west of Fergus Falls, Minn., as the family crossed the halfway point in this year’s harvest. Soybean and turtle bean harvests were completed earlier. Photo taken Oct. 25, 2017, Fergus Falls, Minn. (Forum News Service/Agweek/Mikkel Pates)

Harvest slows, but for how long?

Cool, wet weather in parts of the Upper Midwest has slowed harvest. But area farmers overall remain ahead of their usual harvest pace.

The new weekly crop progress, released Oct. 1 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and reflecting conditions Sept. 30, found that corn and soybean harvests remain ahead of their respective five-year averages. That reflects the unusually early harvest start this year.

Still, the harvest pace slowed in the end ending Sept. 30. For example, 6 percent of North Dakota corn was harvested on Sept. 30, up only slightly from 4 percent a week earlier.

But the harvest pace will pick up, provided the weather cooperates. Unharvested corn and soybeans are more mature than usual overall, which should boost harvest in early October.

Harvest of spring wheat is virtually wrapped up, so the new weekly report didn't include information on that crop.

Here's a look at corn and soybeans:

Corn

North Dakota — Eighty-five percent of corn was mature Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 54 percent for that date. Six percent of corn was harvested by Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 3 percent.

South Dakota — Eighty-one percent of corn was mature Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 63 percent for that date. Eleven percent of corn was harvested by Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 7 percent.

Minnesota — Eighty-seven percent of corn was mature Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 61 percent for that date. Eight percent of corn was harvested by Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 4 percent.

Soybeans

South Dakota — Ninety-two percent of soybeans had dropped leaves Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 90 percent for that date. Twenty-one percent of soybeans was harvested by Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 20 percent.

Minnesota — Ninety-four percent of soybeans had dropped leaves Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 83 percent for that date. Twenty-seven percent of soybeans was harvested by Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 24 percent.

North Dakota — Ninety-seven percent of soybeans had dropped leaves Sept. 30, compared with the five-year average of 93 percent for that date. Thirty percent of soybeans was harvested by Sept. 39, compared with the five-year average of 26 percent.