Dryness trims U.S. corn and soy prospects

Extreme heat and dryness this week as the crop is reproducing will trim U.S. corn prospects, and even more stress from dry weather will continue through next week, an agricultural meteorologist forecast Tuesday.

“I would think the condition decline will be even more extreme this week. There is going to be a lot of stress on crops the next three days and I don’t see much rainfall through next week,” said Don Keeney, meteorologist for MDA EartSat Weather.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Monday said 66 per cent of the U.S. corn crop was in good to excellent condition, down from 69 per cent a week ago, 72 per cent a year ago, and lower than analysts and traders had expected.

Soybean conditions also declined more than expected. And the spring wheat crop in the northern U.S. Plains is forming heads, leaving it vulnerable to heat.

Keeney said temperatures in nearly all of the major crop producing states would rise into the upper 90s Fahrenheit at mid-week and peak at about 100 F on Thursday.

“In Chicago it will reach 90 F Tuesday, the mid-90s F Wednesday and 100 F on Thursday. It will be cooler Friday through the weekend but I don’t see much rain, so that will be a problem,” he said.

Although the cool down could see temperatures drop into the mid-80s F, high nighttime temperatures and a lack of rainfall will keep stressing crops, Keeney said.

The U.S. corn crop was planted late this year because of excessive rainfall and flooding pushing the reproductive or pollination stage of development into mid to late July rather than late June or early July.
The USDA on Monday said 35 per cent of the crop was silking or pollinating so roughly half of the U.S. crop, estimated at over 90 million acres, the second largest area since 1944, will be pollinating this week.

Telvent DTN weather said well above normal daytime and nighttime temperatures will put extreme stress on corn during the next three to five days, especially on reproductive corn and corn that is shallow rooted due to heavy spring rains.

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