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Productive planting weekend for many Iowa farmers

Planters were rolling in Iowa over the weekend as farmers pushed to get crops in the ground ahead of rain forecast for this week. A majority of the state was dry May 1-3.

The USDA Crop Progress Report released Monday afternoon indicated Iowa farmers have planted 69% of the state's corn crop, as of Sunday. Farmers reported 43% of Iowa soybeans are in the ground.

Friday, May 1

Evidence of planting progress was abundant between Des Moines and Victor, Iowa, on Friday afternoon. Temperatures were a comfortable 70° F. with light 5 mph winds in Poweshiek County.

Outside of Williamsburg, farmers could be be seen working ground, planting, and spraying. From the road, it appeared several fields of cover crops had been terminated in preparation for planting.

A field of green cover crops near Keota on May 1, 2020
Photo credit: Natalina Sents

However, near Keota, a number fields had stands of lush green cover crops.

Farmers were spotted planting and spraying in Louisa and Muscatine counties Friday evening.

A truck and sprayer sit next to a field near Letts, Iowa
Photo credit: Natalina Sents

Across the state, 4-inch soil temperatures averaged in the high 50°s in southern Iowa to mid-60°s in the northwest part of the state.

Saturday, May 2

Near Packwood, Iowa, farmer Troy Adam spent all Saturday planting corn. Temperatures were in the mid-80s. Winds were more than 20 mph.

Troy Adam plants corn near Packwood, Iowa
Photo credit: Natalina Sents

North of Packwood, in Washington County more than a half dozen planters were spotted Saturday evening. A couple of farmers were planting green into standing cover crops while other fields in the area were yellow with recently terminated cover crops.

Field of yellow terminated cover crops
Photo credit: Natalina Sents

Across the state, 4-inch soil temperatures averaged in the 60°s on Saturday.

Sunday, May 3

Sunday was another windy day in Iowa with peak gusts reaching more than 40 mph in the northwest part of the state.

Map of wind in Iowa
Photo credit: Iowa Environmental Mesonet

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