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Another big week for Corn Belt planters

Jeff Caldwell 05/07/2012 @ 3:46pm Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

Farmers had another speedy week in the corn planters despite some fairly regular and, in spots, heavy rainfall in the heart of corn and soybean country.

As of Sunday, 71% of the nation's corn crop is in the ground, up 18% from a week ago and almost 40% ahead of the normal planting pace, according to Monday's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report. In another week's time, farmers in states like Illinois and Indiana, where 89% and 84% of the crop is planted respectively, should just about have the crop all in.

But, while states like those are way ahead of the normal pace (Indiana farmers, for example, have almost 50% more of the crop planted than they did a year ago this week), farmers in other key states like Iowa are sticking closer to the normal pace. Normally, farmers there have 58% of the crop sown whereas this week, they've got 64% planted.

Soybean planting is also well ahead of normal, with 24% in the ground as of Sunday. That doubles the previous week's total and is almost 20% higher than the normal pace for this week, USDA showed Monday. Farmers in states like Indiana, Nebraska and Ohio saw progress gains near 20% of the total crop.

The rapid soybean and corn planting progress is carrying some fairly major implications for a lot of farmers who are ahead of normal, like Agriculture.com Marketing Talk senior contributor GoredHusker.

"Done with corn. Will plant my few token soybean acres beginning of the week," he said over the weekend. "It will be the earliest ever I've planted soybeans, but how can one argue when the ground temperature is right at 70? I'm not sure if I ever recall having wheat headed before the first of May either."



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