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A quick field tour

Jeff Caldwell 05/17/2011 @ 4:12pm Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

The weather has begun to cooperate in parts of the Corn Belt.

Now, though some farmers in the eastern Corn Belt are waiting on drier weather, others are starting to shift attention from corn to soybeans, with some states' farmers working toward the halfway point for beans this week.

That's where you'll find the Agriculture.com team this week, checking in on how the spring is unfolding for soybeans, from the most pertinent agronomic concerns, to the latest products farmers are putting to work in their fields, to how long it will be until the planters are put in the shed for the spring.

Follow along! Click below for more photo, text and video updates from the tour!

The progress underway right now is not just a welcome development for farmers who are behind their normal planting pace, but also a good thing when it comes to the outlook for the coming weeks, according to Donald Keeney, Senior Agricultural Meteorologist with MDA Information Systems, Inc. Earlier projections indicated a trend toward a drier, warmer pattern over much of the nation's midsection this summer, but more recent estimates show the cooler, damp period to last a little longer than originally thought.

"The drier trend in the northwest Midwest is loaded towards late summer (late July and August)," Keeney says. "June precipitation is actually near to slightly above normal in the northwest Midwest."

Follow along as we hit the road to visit a few farms, agribusinesses and agronomy specialists to get a snapshot of what this spring's fieldwork is looking like in one big Corn Belt row crop state.


The temperature and precipitation maps above show the cooler, damp conditions look to be sticking around in parts of the Corn Belt and Midwest through later in the summer, when things should turn drier and warmer, according to Donald Keeney, Senior Agricultural Meteorologist with MDA Information Systems, Inc.

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