Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending September 28, 2014.
GENERAL: Days suitable for field work 4.4. Topsoil moisture 1% very short, 9% short, 74% adequate and 16% surplus. Subsoil moisture 1% very short, 10% short, 75% adequate and 14% surplus. Areas in the Piedmont and Eastern North Carolina received heavy rainfall during the week along with cloudy, cool temperatures. Average temperatures were in the mid-60s. The precipitation will delay farmers once again until the fields can dry out.
Reported crop progress data for the week showed soybeans setting pods almost complete at 95% and leaf drop at 34%. Cotton bolls opening recorded at 75%. Reports for corn harvested for grain at 71% and harvested for silage at 83%. Flue-cured tobacco harvest was reported at 80% while Burley harvested is at 65% both remain behind the previous year and the 5 year averages. Sweet potato harvest is at 40%, apple harvest is at 70% and the third cutting of hay is reported at 73%.
Corn harvest is about 85% complete. Yields ranging from 150 to 250 bu. per acre. All corn is ready to harvest but 5 days of rainfall last week prevented farmers from finishing. Dry weather the weekend helped but more rain in the forecast for Tues/Wed. Soybeans have lodged in places, which will reduce yields.
–Mark Seitz – Pender County Extension
Starting to see more tobacco fields in which harvest is complete. Tobacco barn curing space continues at full capacity as farmers do their best to get the late crop in before the first frost in mid-October. Sweet potato harvest continues with reported good yields. Peanuts, cotton, and soybeans are also looking good.
–Brian Parrish – Harnett County Extension
Tobacco leaf quality declining rapidly due to continued rainfall. Likewise, cotton is mature but unable to defoliate or harvest due to rains. Quality and yield of both crops at risks.
–Mike Carroll – Craven and Carteret County Extension
Farmers are trying to get corn harvest finished but are also harvesting soybeans. Recent rains have been favorable on late planted soybeans and cabbage. Some farmers are dealing with some insect problems in their late soybeans. Delayed corn harvest may have some affect on land preparation for wheat planting, but with the prospects of wheat prices, wheat acreage may be off significantly.
–Al Wood – Pasquotank County Extension
Last week hay producers got fooled by the meteorologists who kept calling for sunny days. A lot of hay was cut early in the week and rained on. The slow rain was good, however, for those who had already sowed or reseeded forages. Around here, soybeans are just beginning to drop leaves.
–Stephen Bishop – Cleveland NRCS
Pumpkin harvest is going strong. Most of the burley crop is in the barn and the rest should be in the barn within the next 2 weeks.
–Julia Houck – Ashe-Alleghany County Extension
General rains 10 days ago have had time to improve crop yield prospects. Some corn farmers averaging over 100 bushels thanks to new drought tolerant genetics. Soybeans also have improved prospect for above average yields. Adoption of continuous no till by our farmers has really paid off. A study in area indicated that the soil’s Cation exchange capacity and humic matter doubles in 4 years of no till.
–Steve Gibson – Catawba County Extension