Brazil Month-By-Month Crop Cycle

Due to the tropical climate and long growing season in Brazil, the crop production cycles in Brazil are much more complicated than the traditional cropping cycles found in the United States. Below is a month-by-month account of what to expect during the Brazilian growing season as well the typical weather expected during each month.

September

  • Winter wheat is approaching maturity in southern Brazil.
  • Corn planting begins in southern Brazil.
  • Early soybean and corn planting begins in Mato Grosso and central Brazil.
  • Rains usually begin about this time in central Brazil, temperatures are very hot.
  • Scattered showers start to occur in southern Brazil, temperatures can be hot.

October

  • Wheat harvest and corn planting underway in southern Brazil.
  • Soybean planting in full swing in southern Brazil, continue corn and soybean planting in central Brazil.
  • Rainfall frequency picks up in Brazil, rains 1-2 times a week, distribution may be uneven.
  • Temperatures remain very hot in central Brazil, warming up in southern Brazil.

November

  • Early November is main soybean planting period in Brazil, full season corn crop should be all planted by now.
  • Earliest planted soybeans may start flowering by end of the month.
  • Early planted corn begins pollination.
  • Rainfall now more frequent, 3-4 times a week, temperatures remain very hot in central Brazil.

December

  • Finish soybean planting, early-planted soybeans flowering and setting pods.
  • Begin spraying to control soybean rust.
  • Corn crop completes pollination and begins grain filling.
  • Cotton planted begins in central Brazil.
  • Rains every day, especially in central Brazil, southern Brazil not quite as wet.
  • Cloud cover and rain holds temperatures in the 90's.

January

  • Soybeans flowering and setting pods.
  • Some very early soybeans in central Brazil may be harvested this month.
  • First harvested soybeans shipped to processors.
  • Continue spraying to control soybean rust.
  • Corn in grain filling phase.
  • Peak of the rainy season, rains 2-3 times a day in central Brazil, overcast, very hot and humid, greenhouse-like conditions.

February

  • Main pod filling month for soybeans.
  • Early soybeans being harvested, corn harvest begins.
  • Harvested soybeans arrive at ports, soybean exports begin by early February.
  • Soybean rust control now focused on later maturing soybeans.
  • Safrinha (second corn crop) planted after early soybeans are harvested.
  • Can still be very rainy in central Brazil, rainfall less frequent in southern Brazil.

March

  • Main soybean harvesting month, full-season corn harvest wraps up.
  • Soybean exports in full swing.
  • Critical time for soybean rust to affect late maturing soybeans.
  • Safrinha corn crop in vegetative phase.
  • Begin planting winter small grain crop in southern Brazil.
  • Rains become more scattered, weather becomes dryer by the end of the month.
  • Temperatures become more moderate.

April

  • Finish soybean harvest.
  • Long lines of trucks taking soybeans to the ports and long lines of vessels waiting to load.
  • Safrinha corn crop in late vegetative stage or early reproductive.
  • Rains become more scattered in central Brazil, southern Brazil also starting to dry out. Temperatures ease to more moderate levels.

May

  • Safrinha corn filling grain, early-planted safrinha corn harvest begins.
  • Cotton in central Brazil in reproductive phase.
  • Rains have ended in central Brazil and dry season has started.
  • Scattered rains continue to fall in southern Brazil.
  • Temperatures are warm in central Brazil, cooling in southern Brazil.

June-July-August

  • This is the dry season in central Brazil, rainfall is very sparse if any, temperatures are upper 80's lower 90's sometimes much hotter, may have occasional cooler periods in central Brazil.
  • Temperatures in southern Brazil are cool, may even have occasional light frosts.
  • Occasional rains can occur in southern Brazil.
  • Remainder of safrinha corn is harvested during this period.
  • Cotton is harvested in central Brazil.
  • Small gains are in vegetative development in southern Brazil.
  • Farmers are actively marketing their grain and watching for selling opportunities due to potential weather problems in the U.S.
  • Farmers are making plans for the next growing season and purchasing their inputs.