USDA Weekly Crop Progress Report - Corn, Soybean Planting Equal to Slightly Ahead of Average

OMAHA (DTN) -- Despite the return of more winterlike weather across parts of the country, U.S. farmers continued to plow ahead with corn and soybean planting last week, according to USDA NASS' weekly Crop Progress report released Monday.

As of Sunday, April 18, farmers had planted an estimated 8% of intended corn acres. That was 2 percentage points ahead of last year's 6% and equal to the five-year average, according to NASS.

"Texas leads the way with 60% corn planted," said DTN Lead Analyst Todd Hultman. "Missouri is 14% planted, Illinois is at 12%, Indiana is at 7% and Iowa is at 4% planted."

Two percent of corn had emerged as of Sunday, above the five-year average of 1% emerged for this time of year.

In its first national soybean planting report of the year, NASS estimated that 3% of the intended soybean crop had been planted by week's end, slightly above 2% for both last year and the five-year average.

"The three Southern states showing double-digit soybean planting progress were Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana," Hultman said.

Spring wheat planting was also running ahead of normal, at 19% complete as of Sunday, well ahead of 7% at the same time last year and 12% for the five-year average.

"The state of Washington leads the way at 70% of spring wheat planted, followed by Idaho and South Dakota, each at 46% planted," Hultman said.

Development of winter wheat, on the other hand, was running behind normal. Winter wheat heading was estimated at 10% as of Sunday, behind 13% last year and 4 percentage points behind the five-year average of 14%.

For the third week in a row, winter wheat condition held steady at 53% good to excellent, which is below last year's 57% good-to-excellent rating at the same time.

"The week's highest good-to-excellent ratings for winter wheat were found in California, Ohio and Michigan," Hultman said. "Colorado, Texas and South Dakota had the lowest ratings and are among the driest winter wheat states."

Sorghum was 15% planted. Cotton planting was 11% complete. Rice was 33% planted, and 16% of the crop had emerged.

Oats were 50% planted as of April 18, and emergence was at 16%.

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