Louisiana Field Reports: Dryness Stressing Crops

    Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending May 20, 2018.

    Comments from Cooperative Extension Service Parish Agents

    Vincent Deshotel, Saint Landry Parish
    “Most crops are becoming drought stressed at this point. A general rain is needed. Some spotty showers have offered some relief. Livestock pastures are short on forages and hay cuttings are light. Some cattle producers are already feeding fresh baled hay. High heat is affecting many crop areas especially crawfish, corn, and sugarcane. Many acres of soybeans are sitting waiting on rain, some apparent stand loss has been reported due to drought conditions.”

    Jeremy Hebert, Acadia Parish
    “There has been extremely dry conditions. Farmers have established permanent floods on rice. The excessive heat and sunshine are causing some water strains for farmers. Later planted rice fields are being flushed several times before establishing a flood. Soybeans are slow to germinate as the moisture level in the soil has just about dissolved. A good rain will add some much needed moisture to the fields so that farmers can finish planting. Pastures are drying and some cattle ranchers that have the ability, are flushing pastures. Some cattlemen have already resorted to feeding hay. Rainfall is much needed.”

    Jimmy Flanagan, Saint Mary Parish
    “We need a rain bad! Crop growth has come to a snail’s pace. Soybeans that have emerged will start to burn up if we don’t receive a rain soon.”

    Blair Hebert, Iberia Parish
    “Field conditions remain dry affecting all crops, pastures, and livestock. Sugarcane and soybeans are showing some slight stress. Crawfish ponds are being drained.”

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    General Comments

    According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service in Louisiana, there were 6.5 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending Sunday, May 20, 2018. Topsoil moisture supplies were 15 percent very short, 50 percent short, 33 percent adequate, and 2 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were 9 percent very short, 37 percent short, 54 percent adequate, and 0 percent surplus.

    Low temperatures ranged from 63.2 degrees Fahrenheit at Homer to 75.2 degrees Fahrenheit at Galliano. Highs ranged from 88.4 degrees Fahrenheit at Lake Providence to 95.3 degrees Fahrenheit at New Orleans. The precipitation for this week was minimal throughout the State, with the highest concentration in the southeast part of the State with an average of 1.05 inches.

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