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U.S. corn beginning to silk

U.S. corn beginning to silk

About 8 percent of the national corn crop is in this stage, the USDA said

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

The U.S. corn crop is starting to enter its next development stage.

About 8 percent of national corn acres are silking, the USDA’s latest Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin said on July 9. That figure is down from 34 percent last year.

On a state level, 73 percent of corn in Texas is in the silking stage. That number is up from 67 percent in 2018.

In North Carolina, where corn is 62 percent silked, some crops are even further along, said Darren Armstrong, a producer from Belhaven, N.C.

“Our corn is tasseled and is starting to pollinate,” he told “We’re about three weeks away from harvest and I really think we’ve got a good crop on our hands.”

Some of his crop, though, is showing stress because of hot and dry spells during the growing season.

“We had about two weeks in May that was really hot and dry, and I think it knocked some of the corn back a little bit,” Armstrong said. “Then, around the end of June, we got back into drought conditions.”

Given Hurricane Florence’s effect on the state’s ag industry last year, dry weather is an easier hurdle to overcome, he added.

American soybean fields are also progressing.

About 10 percent of the U.S. soybean crop has bloomed, the USDA’s report said. That figure is down from 44 percent last year.

Louisiana leads the country in the category.

Soybeans in the state are 73 percent bloomed, which is down from 91 percent last year. Soybeans in Michigan and Wisconsin haven’t yet flowered, the USDA said. has reached out to soybean producers for crop updates.


Oleksandr Yuchynskyi/iStock/Getty Images Plus photo

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