Corn and soybean planting progress is the lowest it has been since 1995
By Diego Flammini
The 2019 planting season is shaping up to be one for the record books.
U.S. farmers have planted 67 percent of national corn acres, the USDA’s latest Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin said on June 4.
That figure is the lowest planting progress recorded since 1995.
By June 2 of that year, growers had only seeded 77 percent of their corn.
This year is as wet as some farmers can remember.
“In recent memory, this is absolutely as bad as I’ve ever experienced,” said Mike Beard, a cash crop producer from Frankfort, Ind., told Farms.com. “Getting this crop planted has been a moving target.”
The cool and wet conditions had Beard considering making crop input changes.
“We were within two days of returning seed because we thought the maturity level was such that it was too long and we wouldn’t get the results we wanted,” he said. “We certainly planted our longest-maturing (hybrids) first then scaled back to earlier ones.”
He did switch some soybean acres on his farm to corn for crop insurance purposes.
“We decided to do that at the last minute,” he said. “This is the last day to plant for crop insurance and we knew we could get on this ground rather than waiting for some other land to get ready.”
U.S. soybean progress is also far behind.
Only 39 percent of U.S. soybeans are in the ground, the USDA reported.
That figure is lowest since 1995 when by June 2 farmers had only planted 40 percent of soybeans.
Some farmers are used to the wet conditions, said Larry Thomas, a producer from Elizabethtown, Ky.
“It’s been like this for the past two years,” he told Farms.com. “Last year our final planting date was around June 8, and we’ve still got 170 acres left to plant this year.”