Ag News

Expert: Most Crops Should Be Mature Before Cold Snap, But Wet

Northwest Iowa — While a predicted hard freeze could possibly end the growing season this coming weekend, chances are that while much of the crop was planted late, most of it is mature, and a freeze shouldn’t do much damage at this point — that from Iowa State University Extension Agronomist Joel De Jong.

He says those farmers that were able to plant early have seen some good things.

But he says not everything is negative.

De Jong says that by the time the cold snap hits, even most of the corn planted in June should be very nearly mature. And the quality and test-weight should be about normal. But he says getting the crop to maturity is only part of the issue.

De Jong says there have been some diseases that have hit too.

De Jong says the conditions vary widely across the nine counties he covers. He says a late frost would help with a lot of the issues.

He says much of the area’s corn still needs additional time to mature and a light frost may not hurt the crop, but for late-planted corn, an early frost could negatively affect crop yields. DeJong says it is very likely many farmers will need to resort to the grain dryer, which only adds to the cost of the crop.

The latest forecast for northwest Iowa says the lowest predicted temperature in the next week is supposed to be 28 degrees on Sunday night in Lyon County. De Jong says a killing frost is 28 degrees, but it has to be at that temperature for four hours or more.

Our news partner, Radio Iowa contributed to this story.