Summer finally swept into the Northeast last week, bringing needed warm, drying weather to crop. Here's a quick look at crop growing conditions based on National Agricultural Statistics Service's Monday, June 24, reports.
Top soil moisture levels were near perfect – 100% and 96% adequate to surplus, respectively, in Delaware and Maryland. Corn crop condition was rated 66% good to excellent in Delaware and 87% in Maryland.
Soybean crop conditions were rated 60% good to excellent across Delaware and 80% for Maryland. Maryland appears headed for a very good winter wheat crop, with crop condition reported at 90% good to excellent going into pre-harvest. Only 64% of Delaware's wheat rated good to excellent.
Hay supplies were generally rated as adequate in both states. Pasture conditions were 92% good to excellent in Maryland and 80% in Delaware.
Sunny skies and warm weather dominated the region last week, helping to dry out wet soils. While top soil moisture generally rated 97% adequate to surplus, the rating was shifting to a higher percentage being adequate – the right direction.
The last of the field corn was planted last week. Silage corn was rated 95% good to fair, 5% better than 2012 and the five-year average.
First-crop hay pushed past the half-way mark, and was rated fair to good. Second cutting is projected to be good.
Good news for sweet corn eaters: New England's early corn was 90% emerged, well ahead of 2012 and the five-year average.
Potato and strawberry growers were still struggling with the effects of all the rain received this spring. It was most often noted in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Early June's heavy rains were still leaving footprints in the Garden State. Topsoil moisture levels were 70% adequate and 20% surplus, increasing disease pressure in many crops. But drier, warmer air was on the way.
Pasture conditions were 25% fair, 30% good and 45% excellent. No crop condition reports were provided for corn, soybeans or small grains.