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Planting weather window cracks -- USDA

Jeff Caldwell 05/06/2013 @ 3:37pm Agricultural content creator and marketer.

Farmers didn't exactly light the world on fire in the last week, but some did make strides in planting corn, especially compared to the dismal progress of the past 3 weeks.

Monday's USDA-NASS Crop Progress report shows 12% of the nation's corn crop has been planted. Though that's still 35% behind the normal pace for this week, it's a big boost after the last 3 weeks' cold, wet weather permitted a combined 5% planting completion.

Double-digit strides in planting progress were made in some Plains states, as well as the southeast and eastern seaboard. Still, farmers in the "I-states" -- Iowa, Illinois and Indiana -- made good strides, from 1%-2% to 7%-8% in the last week.

Meanwhile, Monday's report shows a slight dip in winter wheat conditions. The amount of that crop -- which has battled drought and late-season freezing temperatures -- in very poor to poor condition moved higher by 4% in the last week, while the amount in good to excellent shape dropped by 1%.

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