North Carolina: Hot, Dry Conditions Wearing on Crops – USDA

    Drought stricken corn. Photo: USDA

    Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending June 21, 2015.

    Extension Comments

    Stanley Holloway – Yancey Co Extension
    Weather conditions for the week were rather hot for this time of the year with highs in the upper 80’s to lower 90’s. Scattered rain showers and thunderstorms brought some much needed moisture to some areas of the county but other areas remain dry. Some of the storms were severe with heavy rain and hail, however minimal damage has been reported. Most crops are progressing well. Hay producers are continuing to harvest their first cutting but hay quality is starting to decline due to over maturity and warm temperatures.

    Colby Lambert – Agronomist Region 9
    Rain over the past week has helped in some areas of the region. Other areas still have not received rain, and crop conditions are worsening. Corn in many areas will have reduced yield and tobacco, soybeans, and cotton has also suffered yield loss. Sweet potato transplanting is still underway where rain has allowed. Weed control has been a challenge with dry, hot conditions, and pigweed is beginning to overtake some fields. Continued hot, dry weather this week will further yield loss in many areas of the region.

    Steve Gibson – Catawba Co Extension
    Record breaking heat has intensified drought farmers for the most part have ceased planting soybeans into small grain stubble; however, beans previously planted are for the most part emerging into decent stands since moisture in wheat stubble was adequate another week as hot and dry weather is predicted. We are waiting to see what develops but if conditions continue we are headed for a very bad year for the field and forage crops.

    Richard Rhodes – Bertie Co Extension
    Hot and dry weather conditions have contributed to a speedy harvest of the clary sage crop. However, the dry soil conditions in many areas of the county and has resulted in delaying soybean planting behind sage and wheat. A few reports of tobacco flowering early.

    Roy Thagard – Greene Co Extension
    Hot and dry conditions lately have had crops under stress. Isolated showers have given crops a much-needed relief, however not everyone has received recent showers. We’re hopeful for more rain in the future. Tobacco crop needs a shower so nitrogen can be taken up. Seeing a good amount of Bacterial Wilt and sun scald in tobacco fields already this season.

    Brian Parrish – Harnett Co Extension
    Extreme high heat during week took a toll on early corn planted in sandier soils. Lower leafs of tobacco were also burned in some fields. Stress on tobacco plants also gave first signs of Granville Wilt. Despite the heat, good progress was made on small grain harvest with many farmers finishing up. Some soybeans planted just before the extreme heat came may have to be replanted due to low germination. Sweet potato transplanting is progressing well.

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