Farmers in the Volunteer State got a break from rain that had been plaguing them in recent weeks, according to NASS. Dry conditions during the week ending June 22 gave farmers six days suitable for fieldwork, about twice the amount of time they’d had the previous week. As a result, a lot of progress was made with soybean planting and the wheat harvest.
Strong yields are expected for wheat, which is more in line with its five-year average and where it was last year. Soybean plantings are above last year at this time and within 7 points of its five-year average of 85 percent, according to NASS.
"Dyer County producers have made good progress with soybean planting, despite multiple days of scattered showers and thunderstorms, and are basically planted up to double-crop wheat beans. Cotton was still struggling with lack of heat units following previous weeks of cool weather," reported Tim Campbell, Dyer County agent, who added the dry weather was particularly helpful for his county, which had been hit with flooding.
"Flood waters from the Obion River and Forked Deer River tributaries still plague some areas with continued flooding. Trimble bottoms were hit extremely hard. Estimated planted acres lost due to flood waters (are) around 5,500 acres.
"Additional fertilizer has been applied by air on many corn acres due to extreme wet conditions through the month of May. Many fields were showing signs of nitrogen loss due to wet conditions. Other fields’ saturated soil conditions in the root zone resulted in loss of oxygen to the plant, causing yellowing and stunted growth. Producers were busy catching up on weed control spraying last week," Campbell added.
Other extension agents reported farmers in some counties are having problems with weeds. "The farmers in Fayette County had a great week planting beans, harvesting wheat and spraying pesticides. Weeds were becoming a problem. Corn is starting to tassel. Hay is being cut," stated Jeff Via, agent for Fayette County.
"Tremendous progress was made in wheat and hay harvest. There are some weed management concerns, particularly marestail in double-cropped soybeans," said Haywood County agent Walter Battle.
"Wheat harvest got under way this week after numerous rain delays. Producers are reporting good-to-excellent yields with lower than desired test weights. Soybean planting has also resumed with drier soil conditions. Post-emerge weed control efforts by ground equipment also have gotten back in swing," reported Weakley County agent Jeff Lannom.
Creig Kimbro, extension agent for Grundy County, said corn, soybeans and pastures were looking better because of last week’s rain.
Topsoil moisture levels across Tennessee were rated 2 percent very short, 15 percent short, 66 percent adequate and 17 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels were rated 2 percent very short, 12 percent short, 70 percent adequate and 16 percent surplus, according to NASS.
By Tesa Nauman