Heavy rains fell across much of Iowa with just 3.7 days suitable for fieldwork statewide during the week ending September 15, 2019, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Fieldwork activities included harvesting hay and seed
corn, chopping silage, and seeding cover crops.
Topsoil moisture condition was rated 1 percent very short, 13 percent short, 81 percent adequate and 5 percent surplus. Precipitation this past week helped increase topsoil moisture levels in all districts. However, the topsoil moisture rating in east central, south central and southeast Iowa districts remains above 25 percent short to very short. Subsoil moisture
condition was rated 3 percent very short, 18 percent short, 76 percent adequate and 3 percent surplus.
Ninety-four percent of the corn crop was in or beyond the dough stage, over two weeks behind both last year and the 5-year average. Seventy-four percent of the crop has reached the dented stage, 15 days behind last year and 10 days behind average.
Eight percent of corn reached maturity, 19 days behind last year and 13 days behind average. Corn condition improved slightly from the previous week to 65 percent good to excellent. Nearly all of the soybean crop has started setting pods at 96 percent statewide, over two weeks behind average. Forty percent of the crop has begun coloring, 11 days behind last year and 8 days behind average. Five percent of soybeans began dropping leaves, almost 2 weeks behind last year and 10 days behind average. Soybean condition also improved slightly from the previous week to 63 percent good to excellent.
The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 84 percent, 4 days behind average. Pasture condition rated 43 percent good to excellent. There were a few reports of high numbers of insects around livestock and concerns for livestock in permanent pastures.