Border Collies herd sheep

Border Collies gather sheep on a hilly pasture at Dream Valley Farm near Strum, Wisconsin.

Jane Fyksen/Agri-View

Another week of cool weather in Wisconsin is holding back the maturity process for corn and soybeans, but the rest of the state's main crops were doing well, according to the latest crop report.

The USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service report for the week ending Sept. 3 said overnight lows dipped to the 40s in most parts of the state and some lows in the 30s were reported in far northern Wisconin.

Rain accompanied the cool weather in parts of Wisconsin, with the rain making fields too wet for machinery.

"Crops look good but they have a long way to go before they are ready," an Adams/Juneau County report said. "Everyone has their fingers crossed that we don't have a frost until the end of October."

The cool weather has continued into September.

"Fall-like weather in August has farmers concerned about what September weather will bring," a Vernon County report said.

Crop condition stayed mainly in the good to excellent range.

The corn crop was 72 percent good to excellent, with 79 percent of the crop in the dough stage or beyond and 33 percent in the dent stage. Some farmers reported they were harvesting corn for silage.

The soybeans crop was 75 percent good to excellent, with 95 percent of the crop setting pods and 12 percent having leaves turning color.

The third cutting of alfalfa was 94 percent complete and the fourth cutting was 45 percent complete.

Oats harvested for grain was 86 percent done and winter wheat planting has started.

The potato crop was 72 percent good to excellent, pasture 72 percent good to excellent and all hay 82 percent good to excellent.

Soil moisture stayed mostly in the adequate to surplus range statewide, except in the southwest part of the state.

Subsoil moisture was 95 percent adequate to surplus statewide, down two points from a week earlier, and topsoil moisture was 92 percent adequate to surplus, one point better than a week earlier.


Bill Novak is a general assignment reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal.