De Jong: Rains Helped Erase Dry Cropland Area

Northwest Iowa — Recent rains have helped the crops. That’s the word from an expert in the field.

Joel De Jong (file photo)
Joel De Jong (file photo)

Iowa State University Extension Field Agronomist Joel De Jong says the rains helped erase an area that was in the beginning stage of drought.

De Jong says Mother Nature could still throw us a curve ball, but it’s looking like it’s going to be a good harvest in northwest Iowa this fall.

We are seeing and hearing fewer and fewer crop dusters in the skies, and De Jong says it could be that the tiny insects are controlled. He says that fields he has looked at recently have soybeans anywhere from the very early R5 stage of development, to just beginning the R6 stage. Aphids continue to be present, he says, but not at heavy populations in all fields. He also says most studies seem to show that treating aphids in the R6 stage rarely pays.

De Jong also says he’s noticing some beans “turning” already as well. Turning refers to the bean plants turning color from summertime green to autumn yellow. He says some areas with more stress, like those planted in the higher soil compaction areas on end rows may turn early, but he says there were also some soybeans planted quite early this year, as conditions were right early in the season. He says these beans are of course more mature, and will of course be ready for harvest sooner than those planted in the typical planting season.

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