A stretch of dry weather allowed farmers to make up for lost time and get the planters rolling last week. The latest Crop Progress and Condition report from the Louisiana Ag Statistics Service shows cotton planting now at 54 percent complete, while soybeans are 72 percent planted. Sweet potato planting is now underway with 7 percent of the crop in the ground.
Both the corn and wheat crop conditions continue to show the effects of a very wet spring. Well over half of both crops fall into the fair to poor categories.
Comments from Cooperative Extension Service Parish Agents:
“Producers have been able to catch up with fieldwork due to drier weather. Some corn is being irrigated. Producers who had back water flooding have been able to plant or are trying to get land prepared for planting.” – Carol Pinnell-Alison, Franklin Parish
“The majority of soybeans were planted this past week with ideal conditions and most are emerged. Much of the rice acres were fertilized and going to permanent flood. Grain sorghum and corn crops will have to deal with weak spots due to excessive rain at planting but have improved as the crop comes on. Cattle producers are near complete with spring workings and moving into hay production. Much of the first hay cutting was put up over the last ten days.” – Vincent Deshotel, Saint Landry Parish
“Favorable weather this week allowed a lot of fieldwork and a large portion of soybeans to be planted. Soybeans are coming up nice. Rice is looking good. Many farmers have established a permanent flood and rice is getting close to green ring. I expect some farmers to be top dressing rice next week and the week after. Hay cutting is coming along fine. The fields benefited from the rainfall and had very good, fairly rapid growth.” – Jeremy Hebert, Acadia Parish
“Finally had a great week to dry out and get fieldwork done with rice, still too wet in some places to plant soybeans. Pastures are looking great. Farmers are trying to cut hay as fields dry.” – Jimmy Meaux, Calcasieu Parish
“With favorable weather conditions, farmers have been very busy and crops, livestock, and gardens are progressing quite well. Nearly all sugarcane has been fertilized, and many farmers are nearly complete "lay - by" activities. Rust is still a concern, but overall the sugarcane crop is looking good. Soybeans were planted and earlier planted soybeans are coming along nicely; however acreage is down. Hay was baled, with quality expected to be down as pastures were cut late due to earlier rains. Cattle and calves continue to progress. Vegetable gardens are coming along with a few disease concerns.” – Blair Herbert, Iberia Parish
“Dry weather during the past week allowed much fieldwork to be completed. Most sugarcane producers are finishing fertilizing and will begin to lay by.” – Mariah Simoneaux, Saint James Parish