Hot weather is normally great for growing corn – but a lack of rain is causing problems.
Officials say only half of Wisconsin’s corn crop is in good-to-excellent condition. The average height is 40-inches, but that varies – even within the same farm field. And there’s a lot of curling and other signs of stress with the corn. About a quarter of it is rated poor-to-very-poor, as the ground below it literally thirsts for rain. Sixty-two percent of Wisconsin farm fields are either short or very-short of moisture. Madison only had about a third-of-an-inch of rain in June, the lowest ever for the month. And until this morning, La Crosse only had a trace of rain since June 21st. Just three-percent of Wisconsin’s soybeans have bloomed, and almost half the crop is rated good-to-excellent. Officials say weeds have become a problem. Oats are doing well, with two-thirds in good-to-excellent shape. And two-thirds of the second hay crop is in. But experts say farmers will be in trouble if the state doesn’t get some good, soaking rains soon. Forecasters say southern Wisconsin probably won’t get any rain at least until the weekend. And after this morning, there’s only a slight chance for more showers in the north for the rest of the week.