USDA Crop Progress Report-- August 28, 2023

Crop Progress Graphic

National corn condition ratings dropped two points in the good to excellent ratings, sinking down to 56 percent. However, for perspective, that is still two points higher than the rating one year ago at this time. In the important I-80 Corridor, Ohio showed a healthy gain of five points and Illinois gained three while on the west end of the Corridor, Nebraska and Iowa both declined by six points since last week.

The national soybean condition rating slipped by one point down to 58 percent good to excellent. Similar to the corn ratings, Ohio posted a four-point gain and Illinois rose by three. But again, on the west end of the I-80 Corridor, Nebraska and Iowa both dropped six points. Outside the Corridor, it was noteworthy that South Dakota trimmed five points from its rating and Minnesota came down by four.

Cotton condition ratings nationwide held steady at only 33 percent good to excellent. However, there were some big declines in individual state crop condition ratings. The biggest move to the downside was reported by Alabama which dropped six points while North Carolina and Mississippi both dropped by five. The largest producing state of Texas actually improved by a couple points, but it still has by far the worst rating with only 12 percent in the good to excellent categories.

The national grain sorghum condition rating dropped by six points to only 45 percent good to excellent this week. The key reasons were HUGE drops of 10 points in both Kansas and Nebraska. Colorado and South Dakota also reported losses of three and two points respectively.

We got our first grain sorghum harvest update for the season and it showed that 17 percent of the nation’s crop is now in the bin compared to the five-year average of 19 percent. The largest producing state of Texas was the only one of the Plains states reporting this week and it posted harvest progress of 63 percent statewide.

Spring wheat harvest is now 54 percent complete nationwide - nine points behind its five-year average. South Dakota is almost done already with 91 percent now cut. Washington state harvested a fourth of its crop in the last seven days to report 78 percent completion.

Pasture conditions in the Plains saw steep declines in most areas highlighted by Nebraska losing 11 points since last week. Kansas pastureland dropped by seven points. Bucking the trend was South Dakota which improved by six points. It was a different story, though, in the Rockies and Southwest where most states showed improving conditions led by New Mexico which posted a large 14 point gain.

In the topsoil moisture deficit report (generally considered to measure the top four inches of soil representing the seed planting and sprouting zone), Texas remains in the top (driest) spot with 93 percent of its acres in the short to very short categories. Washington and Louisiana tied for the second position on the list. Several states reported large declines in moisture availability spearheaded by Maryland (Ben Hushon country) which went backwards by an amazing 34 points in the last seven days!

In the subsoil moisture deficit report (considered to measure deep soil moisture down to a few feet where the crop roots would extend downward), Texas keeps a lock on the driest spot with 89 percent short to very short. Montana jumps into second position after seeing its moisture availability slide by eight points. Louisiana slid by nine points to put it in a tie with New Mexico for third place. Another notable move was posted by Iowa which saw its deficit rating expand by 10 points.

USDA Crop Progress 230828.pdf

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