With long spells of rain in the forecast this week, Missouri’s farmers rushed to sow as much seed in the ground as they could.  Despite an average of 3.8 days suitable for field work, farmers were able to plant another 15 percent of their corn in the past week, now putting total progress at 84 percent, just ahead of the five-year average and three points better than last year.  60 percent of the crop has emerged, six points ahead of a year ago but four points off the average pace.  Soybean planting is 36 percent complete, 11 points better than a year ago and seven points better than normal.  14 percent of the crop has emerged, five points better than last year and three points ahead of average.

Farmers in the Bootheel focused on cotton, with 55 percent of the crop planted last week alone.  Planting is now 65 percent complete, 11 points ahead of average and 51 points better than a year ago.  Rice planting remains significantly ahead of pace, with 88 percent planted and 70 percent emerged.  The first crop condition ratings of the season have 60 percent of rice in good or excellent shape, compared to three percent rated poor.

While temperatures were over eight degrees below normal at just under 55 degrees, winter wheat also made noticeable strides in the past week.  80 percent of the crop has headed, now up three percent from a year ago and just ahead of the five-year average.  Conditions are steady with 62 percent in good or excellent shape versus five percent poor.  Pasture conditions also held, with three-fourths of fields considered good or excellent while three percent are rated poor.  Seven percent of alfalfa has received its first cutting and four percent of other hay has been cut, both half the normal rate.

Hay supply is considered short for 12 percent of Missouri farmers, compared to five percent with a surplus.  No stock water shortages are reported, while six percent are believed to have a surplus.  One percent of topsoil and two percent of subsoil were short on moisture heading into this week, compared to surpluses reported for 23 percent of topsoil and 13 percent of subsoil.  An average of 0.45″ of rain fell across Missouri last week, well below the average rate.