Mother Nature continuing to provide Illinois farmers with mostly dry weather, the
2015 harvest is now beginning to wind down, much earlier than recent years.
to the United States Department of Agriculture, the statewide corn harvest is
now 71 percent complete, a big jump from 50 percent the week before, and well
ahead of the five-year average of 59 percent. The soybean harvest is at a
similar point, with 71 percent harvested compared to 49 percent during the
previous week, and the average of 53 percent.
Much of the progress owes to drier than normal weather during recent
months. Last week saw statewide precipitation average of just .03 inches, which
is .54 inches below normal. Just 58 percent of topsoil is rated as having
adequate moisture, with only 4 percent having surplus. The dry conditions are
starting to cause some concerns over pasture conditions heading into the
winter, with only 46 percent of acres rated as “good” or “excellent.”