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July 31, 2013

Trip Report - Indiana and northwestern Ohio

On Sunday I traveled across northern and central Indiana as well as northwestern Ohio with the following observations. Temperatures started out Sunday morning in the low 50's and never got higher than the upper 60's. Many cities in the central Corn Belt set record low temperatures Saturday night and record low-high temperatures on both Saturday and Sunday.

Indiana

  • The soil moisture is good in eastern Indian, but the soils are dryer in western Indiana. The only area I saw in Indiana that needed rain was the northwestern part of the state where there was some moisture stress apparent on the lighter soils. The lawns are green in eastern Indiana, but the lawns are starting to turn brown in northwestern Indiana.
  • The vast majority of the Indiana corn crop is generally in very good condition.
  • The corn is very tall, dark green, healthy, with good plant populations. Most of the corn has either already pollinated or will pollinate very soon. Only the very latest planted corn will pollinate in early August.
  • The size of the ears looks very good. It was too early to determine if there will be any kernel abortion at the tip of the ear, but if the crop gets two or three more rains during August, there will be very little tip-back and Indiana will have very good corn yields.
  • It's hard to say if Indiana will have a record corn yield or not, but it's safe to say it will be above trend line.
  • The Indiana soybeans are good, but they are not as good as the corn. The best soybeans are waist high, dark green and lush, and they have a very good yield potential, but there are also soybeans in the wetter areas that continue to struggle. These struggling soybeans are less than knee high with spotty stands and drowned out spots. The yields of these poorer soybeans will be much below average.
  • The only area where I saw any moisture stress on the soybeans was in northwestern Indiana.
  • The soybeans are flowering and setting pods and Indiana probably has the best soybeans I have seen in the Midwest.
  • Two more significant rains during August would go a long way to assuring an above trend line yield. It would probably take ideal weather during August for the Indiana soybeans to achieve a record yield.

Northwestern Ohio

  • The soil moisture was adequate all throughout northwestern Ohio, in fact, some areas may continue to be too wet. I did not see any dry areas in northwestern Ohio and the lawns were green everywhere I went.
  • The vast majority of the corn looks very good. It is tall, dark green, healthy and in the process of pollinating. Some of the latest planted corn will pollinate in early August.
  • The corn in Ohio is only going to need maybe two more good rains to assure good yields.
  • Certainly the corn crop in Ohio will be above trend line, but I don't know if it will set a record yield or not. If the August weather is good enough to avoid any tip-back on the ears, it could be a record type of crop.
  • The soybean crop in Ohio is not as good as the corn crop. Some of the soybeans are delayed in development and the soybeans are not as uniform as the corn crop.
  • The early planted soybeans are very good with the best soybeans about waist high, lush, and they have a very good yield potential.
  • The latest planted soybeans continue to struggle. Some of the worst soybeans are only half way up to your knee (some are even shorter than that), their color isn't very good, and they never really got into a good growth mode.
  • I did not see any moisture stress on the soybeans and if there are any moisture concerns, it's probably because there has been too much rainfall.
  • The Ohio soybeans crop could easily be above trend line, but I don't think there will be a record soybean crop in the state because there is too much variability in the crop.