Despite the threat of freezing temperatures last weekend, above-average temperatures earlier in the week encouraged Missouri farmers to get their first crops in the ground. USDA’s weekly Crop Progress report indicates that the first four percent of Missouri’s corn was planted last week, as well as three percent of rice. The figures are well behind the five-year average and this time a year ago, when five percent of corn and 12 percent of rice were planted.

Crop conditions increased notably last week, with 49 percent of wheat in good or excellent condition, an eight-point increase from last week. Nine percent of the crop is rated poor or very poor. Pastures also saw a significant improvement, as 63 percent of fields are in good or excellent condition, up 13 points from a week ago. Just four percent of pastures are in poor condition, and only two percent of Missouri farmers lack adequate hay supply.

Missouri averaged five days suitable for fieldwork, with the average temperature at 56-point-four degrees, more than four degrees above normal. Despite average rainfall about three-tenths of an inch, just one percent of topsoil and two percent of subsoil lack adequate moisture.