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CROP PROGRESS: Spring wheat slips to 37%; corn up one at 68%

Soybean ratings drop two points to 64% good/excellent; winter wheat harvest at 53%.

The spring wheat crop's condition declined for the fifth straight week, the latest being just a three-point dip to 37% good to excellent as sizable slippage in Montana and Washington more than offset some improvement in North Dakota and Idaho.

Winter wheat conditions dipped a point to 48% good/excellent. The crop was 53% harvested, trailing the five-year average by a point.

Corn improved a point to 68% good/excellent in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s weekly progress report, with gains noted in Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and Kansas, while Iowa slipped one point to 78% and North Dakota’s dropped a point to 55%.

Soybeans slipped two points to 64% good/excellent and were down from last year’s 70%. Declines were noted in Iowa, Missouri and North Dakota, while Illinois and Indiana were unchanged.

“The decline in wheat conditions knocked another 19 million bu. off our production estimate, which fell to 1.743 billion bu.,” said Bryce Knorr, Farm Futures senior grain analyst. “Spring wheat yield potential lost 1.2 bu. per acre (bpa), declining to 39.8 bpa, with a big drop noted in Montana. Winter wheat yields eased almost 0.2 bpa to 46.3, with the range 45.9-46.8 bpa.”

Montana’s spring wheat was rated 8% good/excellent versus 22% a week ago. Washington’s spring wheat dropped to 43% from last week’s 68%.

“Another week of hot, dry weather with limited precipitation occurred for a majority of the state,” the Montana report said. “High temperatures ranged from the lower 80s to upper 90 degrees, and low temperatures ranged from 28 degrees in West Yellowstone to the lower 50s.”

Montana’s soil moisture continued to decline, with 80% of the topsoil moisture rated very short to short and 77% of subsoil moisture very short to short. Its spring wheat was rated 8% good/excellent, compared with 22% a week ago.

“Corn ratings rose, with gains in a few states, including Illinois and Indiana, offsetting losses elsewhere,” Knorr said. “Our projected corn yield gained almost a half-bushel per acre to 170.6, with the two models at 171.8 and 169.4 bpa. Vegetation Health Index models continue to point towards lower ratings.”

The drop in the soybean rating trimmed about a third of a bushel from the Farm Futures yield rating to 48.7 bpa, with a range of 48.4 -49.1 bpa, Knorr said. The Vegetation Health Index maps point to even lower yield potential of around 47.7 bpa.

Iowa had a few tornadoes, hail and isolated precipitation, “but reporters expressed a need for more rain across much of the state during the week ending July 2,” the state report said.

In other tallies, corn silking reached 10% versus the 13% average, and soybean blooming was 18% versus the 17% average. No corn was silking in Iowa as of Sunday, compared with the 6% average, while Illinois corn silking was at 12% versus the 21% average, and Nebraska was at 8% versus the 9% average.

Nationally, sorghum was 25% headed versus the 24% average. The crop was rated 62% good/excellent, down three points from a week ago.

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