Staetwide, Iowa — Iowa saw a historically wet spring with rain and snow through the first half of April delaying fieldwork and planting activities.
Precipitation throughout May and into June kept field conditions wet making it a difficult start to the 2019 growing season for farmers throughout the State. Planting of corn was nearly complete by June 16 with 98 percent of the expected crop in the ground, over two weeks behind the 5-year average.
Soybean planting continued through the first week of July and was also over two weeks behind average. After a rainy start to the season, precipitation slowed down and fields began to dry up. The weeks ending July 7 through September 1 averaged 5.5 days suitable for fieldwork. During this time, areas of Iowa were rated as D1 moderate drought according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Due to late planting, crop development remained behind average throughout the season. Iowa farmers were able to start on corn and soybean harvest in late September but were hindered by rain and snow creating wet field conditions.
Soybean harvest surpassed last year during the week ending October 20, which marked the only time this season a crop was ahead of the 2018 season. Farmers across the State also dealt with propane shortages slowing corn harvest due to the high moisture content of the crop and the need to dry it down. By early December only a few areas of the State had reports of crops remaining to be harvested.