Crop Report

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CROP AND WEATHER REPORT
For the Monthly Report Ending June 15, 2024

GENERAL COMMENTS & WEATHER:  Since our previous report in mid-May, the last few fields of corn were planted. Soybean planting was in full swing, but then it started to rain more frequently here in Southwestern Minnesota (SWMN). The rains led to delays in planting soybeans, spraying herbicides, and side-dressing nitrogen, as well as creating the need to replant some “wet holes” here into mid-June.  Precipitation has ranged from 3.5 to 7 inches during the past month, with some places reporting rain on about 12 of these days.  There have been quite a few scattered thunderstorms through the area, as amounts have varied from nearly zero to 2 inches within just a mile or two of each other.  This has created some challenges, as one farmer is to be able to get back into the fields right away, and the neighboring farmer is waiting several days for it to dry out.

Fortunately, there have been enough windows of opportunities between the showers to complete most of these field operations in the past couple of weeks.  Post emergent corn spraying has been difficult because of muddy fields, as well as the windy conditions. There are a few fields, mostly from Okabena to southwest of Bergen, that were planned to have soybeans planted on them.  We have opted to submit claims for Prevent Planting crop insurance coverage versus planting them at this time.  We will be processing the insurance claims and sourcing oats seed to use as a cover crop on the impacted acres.

Figure 1. –  This is a photo of an applicator side-dressing liquid 32% nitrogen fertilizer in between the growing corn rows.  

Temperatures have been stable over the last month.  Daily high temps ranged from 68 degrees to 90 degrees and daily lows from 44 degrees to 67 degrees.  According to the Southwestern Minnesota Research and Outreach Center (SWROC) in Lamberton, Minnesota through June 10th, we are at a cumulative 536 Growing Degree Days (GDD), compared to the historical average of 510 GDD.  Topsoil and subsurface moisture levels are above historical averages.

CORN:  The corn planting in Minnesota is now 96% complete, with 84% emergence. The USDA has Minnesota’s corn condition rating at 74% good to excellent, which is identical to the overall United States rating.  In our area, there is significant stand variability in the corn at this point in the season. Even across a field, you might have corn that is approaching “knee high” and corn that is six inches tall. Yellowing of the corn plants is common.  If this crop can obtain a couple weeks of warm weather, it should even out and be just fine with the exception of the “wet holes” in any given field.  Tenants that apply nitrogen via side-dressing in the crop have been busy doing so.  Because of all of the moisture that we have received so far this year, there could be a yield advantage to applying supplemental nitrogen versus the potential for some denitrification that might be occurring from nitrogen that was applied last fall.  The farmers have been trying to complete herbicide applications, rock-picking, and fertilizer applications in the corn this week, otherwise most of the field operations for corn are now complete until harvest.  

Figure 2 –  Above is a photo of a pre-emergent application of herbicide on recently planted soybeans.  With a 120-foot wide sprayer with tracks on it, this equipment can cover a lot of ground in a day as long as it is not too wet or too windy. 

SOYBEANS:  Soybean planting in Minnesota is 87% complete, with 68% emerged. This is lower than last year and the five-year average. The soybeans in Minnesota are rated 71% good to excellent.  Nationally, 72% of the soybeans are rated good to excellent.

As previously mentioned, soybean planting this year has been a long, drawn out endeavor with some fields not being planted at all. This, along with wet conditions, has led emergence to be slow and spotty.  There are some fields that will have to have additional seed spiked into the existing crop to elevate plant population counts.  Even with the windy conditions and issues with excess moisture, producers were able to get most of the beans planted and apply pre-emergent herbicide immediately after planting.  Next up will be completing rock picking and the second round of herbicide application.

Figure 3 – Pictured is a floater that is spreading fertilizer in the corn stocks ahead of a soybean crop.  Producers having fertilizer applied to the acres being planted to soybeans is becoming more popular.  

REMARKS:   We would describe the grain markets as pretty boring, as prices are even to lower since last month.  We have made some recent sales of both corn and soybeans.  Current cash pricing for old crop corn (New Vision Coop – Brewster Terminal) is around $4.50 per bushel while new crop harvest delivery is at $4.29 per bushel. 2023 crop soybeans are around $11.20 per bushel with new crop prices at about $11.00 per bushel.  While input prices were a bit lower this spring and summer it still costs a lot of money to grow a grow a crop.  Crop and machinery expenses and the cost of borrowing money remains high for producers.

The USDA monthly Supply & Demand Report released on June 12th left ending stocks of U.S. corn at an estimated 2.102 billion bushels for the 2024 crop, up slightly from 2.022 billion bushels for the 2023 crop. Production and use amounts were left unchanged at 14.860 billion bushels from last month.  For soybeans, USDA increased ending stocks from 340 million bushel up to 350 million bushels for the 2023 crop. As with corn, soybean production use was left unchanged for the 2024 crop. The initial reaction in the grain markets to the updated information was neutral.  

There continues to be a lot of tasks being completed here at Fairland. The farm managers have been monitoring the fields and working with the tenants and agronomists to evaluate soil conditions, plant stands, and weed pressure/control.  With the wet conditions this spring, we have worked with the tile contractors to fix several broken/plugged tile.  We are processing acreage certifications with the FSA and crop insurance agents, as well as filing replant and prevent plant claims.  The accounting staff continues to work on projections, cash-flows, and processing payments for crop inputs and making grain sales.  It has been a busy and productive start to summer!  

Fairland extends a big Thank You to Chuck Dewanz for his 11 years as a Farm Management Advisor!  We wish him the very best in his upcoming retirement that begins on July 1st.  Sam Dammann, who has been an intern for Fairland the past couple of years and recently graduated from South Dakota State University (SDSU) has begun his new role as Farm Management Advisor. 

Figure 4 – One of the challenges this spring is that the soil is very mellow, so when it gets excessively saturated, it does not dry out very easily.  One can see from the dark soil that it is wet.  Many of these areas are not very big and are on side-hills/small pockets, which makes it difficult to see in the field and sometimes difficult to go around.

 

Growing-Degree Days

  May 1, 2024 to DATE INDICATED TOTAL GROWING DEGREE DAYS DEPARTURE FROM NORMAL
LOCATION
Lamberton
June 10, 2024    536 +26

Corn Growing Degree Days are calculated by subtracting a 50 degree base temperature from the average of the maximum and minimum temperature for the day. The daily maximum is limited to 86 degrees and the minimum is 50 degrees.

Grain Markets (June 13, 2024)

  New Vision-Windom Magnolia POET Ethanol-Bingham Lake Minnesota Soybean Processors- Brewster
Cash-Corn   4.49   4.46 4.50 N/A
Cash-Soybeans 11.16 11.29 N/A 11.50
October-Corn   4.39 4.31 4.41 N/A
October -Soybeans  10.96 10.94 N/A 11.25

 

Rainfall (Inches):

County City April 16 –            May 12, 2024 March 15 to date-2024 March 15 to date-2023
Cottonwood Jeffers   4.9   12.4  14.6
Cottonwood Windom   3.9   11.6    9.0
Jackson Heron Lake   6.8   16.6  13.7
Jackson Jackson   6.0   15.6   9.0
Martin Trimont   4.9   13.8  11.1
Murray Fulda   6.6   16.4  11.5
Murray Slayton

  3.5

  10.8   9.6
Nobles Round Lake   5.6   16.8   9.5
Nobles Rushmore   5.5   17.0   7.5
Rock Magnolia   4.7   15.3   5.9
Watonwan Darfur   3.8   13.0  17.3

 

Charles P. Dewanz

Farm Management Advisor

Real Estate Salesperson

 

Klay D. Walinga

President, General Manager

Real Estate Broker

Accredited Farm Manager