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March 28, 2017

Prospective Planting Report to be released at end of the Week

On Friday, March 31st, the USDA will release the Prospective Plantings Report for the 2017 U.S. growing season. This will be the first estimate of the growing season based on farmer surveys. At the current time, I am estimating that U.S. farmers will plant approximately 91 million acres of corn and 89 million acres of soybeans, but the final acreage will, at least in part, be determined by the spring planting conditions.

The weather this week has turned wetter especially across the southern Plains and the southern Corn Belt. A series of storm systems should result in good rains where the moisture is needed the most from Kansas and Oklahoma eastward. This is very good news for the hard red winter wheat. It is also good news for the southern Corn Belt which had turned quite dry over the late winter.

Going into this week, the driest major corn producing area was probably the state of Missouri as well as western and southern Illinois. It looks like those areas will receive good rains this week. Most of the central and western Corn Belt should end the month of March with below normal precipitation for the month. The temperatures have also turned colder during the second half of the month compared to the first half of the month.

Early corn planting in the southern locations continues to be progressing about a week ahead of last year. In Louisiana 80% of the corn has been planted compared to 31% last year and 48% average. In Mississippi 30% of the corn has been planted compared to 4% last year and 19% average. Farmers in Arkansas have planted 19% of their corn compared to 7% last year and 15% average.