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Wisconsin Crop Weather Report

Issued November 26 for Week Ending November 25, 2018

Usual Planting and Harvesting Dates

The Wisconsin Crop Weather Report is updated weekly by the Wisconsin Agricultural Statistical Service.

Vol. 18, No. 35

Weekend Thaw Slows Farmers

This is the last weekly Wisconsin Crop Progress & Condition for the 2018 season. The USDA’s National Agriculture Statistics Service wishes to thank the many farmers, county agents, and others that provided the information which has allowed you to have an accurate picture of Wisconsin agriculture each week. The first report of next year’s Crop Progress season will be issued on April 1, 2019.

There were 5.1 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending November 25, 2018, according to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. Below-normal temperatures continued through the beginning of this week, before a weekend warm front brought highs in the 40s and light rains. Farmers across Wisconsin worked overtime to combine corn and soybeans before their fields thawed. Many reporters indicated that harvest activities were wrapping up in their counties. Melting frost on Friday and Saturday, however, left soils a wet mess for those still trying to complete fall fieldwork. A few reporters said that some corn and soybean harvest may be prevented by wet field conditions, while others said fall tillage would be prevented. Reporters commented that dairies were struggling to empty their manure pits as fields were either too frozen to incorporate manure or too wet to support machinery. Dry conditions are still needed to help farmers finish up this long and frustrating harvest season.

Topsoil moisture supplies were rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 79 percent adequate and 20 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies were rated 0 percent very short, 1 percent short, 78 percent adequate and 21 percent surplus.

Wisconsin Crop Conditions
Item V-Poor Poor Fair Good Excellent
Winter Wheat 2 5 17 52 24
Source: USDA, NASS, Wisconsin Field Office.

Corn harvested for grain was 88 percent complete, 2 days ahead of the 5-year average. The moisture content of corn harvested for grain was reported at 18 percent, the same as last week.

Soybeans harvest was 94 percent complete, 5 days behind last year and 11 days behind the average.

Ninety-three percent of the winter wheat crop has emerged, 11 days behind last year. Winter wheat condition was 76 percent good to excellent.

Fall tillage was reported at 68 percent complete, 1 day ahead of last year, but 4 days behind the average.

Wisconsin Crop Progress
Crop and percent
of acreage
District Average State Average
Corn Harvested for Grain 86 87 75 87 83 81 93 94 89 88 80 79 85
Fall Tillage 83 51 73 60 69 77 76 57 71 68 58 67 72
Soybeans Harvested 98 87 74 96 95 89 98 97 98 94 91 96 98
Winter Wheat Emerged 100 100 92 94 97 94 86 89 90 93 88 98 n.a.
n.a. = not available

Selected Quotes from Farm Reporters and County Ag Agents
All comments are used in creating this report, but only a few are published below.

BURNETT/WASHBURN-P.H.: Most soybeans have been harvested. Still some corn to finish up. Soils froze a bit so able to travel on fields in wetter places.

RUSK-G.P.: A cold week last week until Friday/Saturday when highs got into the upper 30s and low 40s. Some rain Friday night into Saturday but not much. Some corn and beans off but still a bit standing in the fields.

ASHLAND/IRON-C.B.: Very little field activity except for some manure hauling. Two days of rain eliminated most of the snow cover.

SHAWANO-B.R.: With the ground frozen very hard, the last of the soybeans came off this past week. Most of it was in the 13-14 percent moisture range. Soybean yields were variable this year from a low of 40 to a high of upper 60s. Still have a fair amount of corn to take off yet and now the fields are very wet and muddy again. Very little tillage could be done this week with the deep frost.

CHIPPEWA/EAU CLAIRE-J.C.: Mild, wet weather stopped what remains of the soybean harvest. Field conditions are too wet for corn harvest until it refreezes. Manure application continues regardless of conditions in some cases.

MARQUETTE/WAUSHARA-D.B.: A lot of corn was taken last week. Harvest winding down with many people getting done. DOOR-A.B.: Corn and soybean harvest is slow, but steady. A week of favorable weather helped the harvest along. Many are still behind on manure hauling, which is only about 30-40 percent complete at this time. The ground isn't frozen yet, so progress continues.

KEWAUNEE-T.S.: It has been a challenge getting field work done this fall in this area. The ground continues to be quite wet and when it's dry, it's frozen. The window to get any plowing done has been small, in that time between when the ground is stiff and when it's too hard. However, most of the soil that has to be plowed has been. Some fields will not be tilled, either by choice or because the time ran short. The same goes for hauling out the manure. Once the calendar turns to December, the chances of applying the manure and being able to work it in go down. There will be some manure normally put down this fall that will not be able to be applied until next spring. This could cause a problem during the winter, depending on how full the manure storage is now. And of course, putting off the manure application will mean more work next year before the crops get planted. A warmer and drier winter would certainly help to maintain lower levels in any manure storage structure. Most of the corn and soybeans have been harvested now, with very little remaining.

VERNON-K.L.: The majority of the snow has melted this week. Farmers working all hours of the night to finish up soybean and corn harvest. Still some corn left standing to be harvested. Temperatures still below what is normal for this time of the year.

COLUMBIA-G.K.: Cold but harvestable conditions this past week. Just a few beans and corn still left standing, or should I say lying? Most of the corn acres are heavily lodged and combining is extremely slow going.

DANE-F.P.: Most of the corn is harvested in this area. Manure is being applied to the fields.

WALWORTH-N.W.: Freezing conditions made it possible to finish up a lot of the soft fields. Most producers have finished up their harvest.

Wisconsin Weekly Weather, Selected Cities
Ending as of 7:00 am on November 25, 2018

City Temperature Growing degree days
(modified base 50) 1/
Avg max Avg min High max Low min Avg Avg
dep from normal*
Mar 1 to Nov 24 Mar 1 to Nov 24
Last week Since
Sep 1
Sep 1
dep from normal*
To Date
dep from normal*
Eau Claire 33 22 47 7 27 -3 2896 2599 0.00 10.12 +2.57 36.95 +6.16
Green Bay 36 25 50 17 30 -2 2853 2456 0.26 11.11 +3.99 38.20 +10.92
La Crosse 37 25 47 9 31 -3 3467 2953 0.07 11.69 +4.43 40.83 +10.14
Madison 36 25 49 14 31 -3 3078 2926 0.11 14.93 +7.83 53.91 +23.11
Milwaukee 39 30 48 24 35 -2 3131 n.a. 0.16 14.14 +6.25 44.95 +12.85

T = Trace. n.a. = not available.
1/Formula used: GDD = (Daily Maximum (86°) + Daily Minimum (50°)) / 2 - 50° where 86° is used if the maximum exceeds 86° and 50° is used if the minimum falls below 50°. Explanation.
*Normal based on 1971-2000 data.
Data from the NCEP/NOAA Climate Prediction Center
For more weather data, please reference the following sites: http://www.noaa.gov/ http://www.aos.wisc.edu/~sco/ http://www.cocorahs.org/ http://www.weather.gov/

This report has been made possible through the cooperative efforts of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection, and the National Weather Service.

For climate normals and growing season data for a specific Wisconsin county, first go to our Wisconsin County Home Page, then select your county, then click on the Climate Table link in the left margin for that county.

Current Crop Report with Graphics at USDA

Wisconsin Agricultural Statistical Service

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