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Harvest delays on the way

Jeff Caldwell 10/28/2013 @ 9:25am Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

If you've got crop left to harvest, the next day or so will be a time to really fire up and get rolling, with rainfall around the Corn Belt expected to push back most harvest progress around mid-week, with more coming after a few dry days. In other words, harvest is going to be a stop-and-go affair for many farmers in the next 2 weeks, forecasters say.

"Rains will spread across Midwest corn/soy and Delta cotton/soy Tuesday to Thursday and stall harvest. The heaviest rains will be in the southwest Midwest and Delta, where 1- to 2-inch amounts are likely to be widespread. Most areas will have about a 5-day break in between rains," according to Monday's Ag QUICKsheet from Commodity Weather Group (CWG).

How long will harvest be delayed? Look for the slowdown to start in the western Corn Belt as early as Monday evening, with the system causing delays into Thursday as it moves east through the Midwest, says MDA Weather Services senior ag meteorologist Don Keeney. By the weekend, harvest should be able to resume before another system rolls through the region later on.

"The bulk of the rain will start in the western Midwest later today and Tuesday, then spread across the central and eastern Midwest Wednesday and Thursday," Keeney says. "Thus, harvesting will be stalled during that time. However, I think harvesting will pick up again by the weekend, and remain good through early next week before another system, albeit much weaker, rolls through around November 6."


This map, courtesy MDA Weather Services, shows expected rainfall totals for the week leading up to Saturday, November 2.


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