Corn outlook is good this year

Democrat photo / David A. Wilson
Tasseling has begun as the corn in a field near Prairie Home matures.

Democrat photo / David A. Wilson Tasseling has begun as the corn in a field near Prairie Home matures. Photo by David Wilson.

By DAVID A. WILSON

Democrat Staff

The drought of 2012 made for a poor corn crop last year in Moniteau County, just as it was in much of the rest of Missouri and the Mid-West in general. While it may have been planted, some of it didn't make enough to harvest. As a result, a lot of corn went to silage.

This year started out a little differnt. The rain resulted in much of the corn being planted late because the ground was too wet for the farmers to get in their fields at the normal planting time. And even when the crop was planted in some areas, the fields were flooded out by the next rainstorm and the crop had to be replanted.

Even so, the general rule of "knee high by the 4th of July" for a good corn crop has generally worked out for 2013. Although the corn planted is on average doing fairly well, the height and maturity level actually varies quite a bit.

On some of the high ground where the corn could be put in early, it is pretty far along. One such field in the Prairie Home area has a corn crop of seven feet or more in height, although not much had tasseled as of a few days ago. On the other hand, several fields in low-lying areas is very short and not too far along.

However it is locally, the anticipation nationwide seems to be for a large corn crop this year. One report indicates that the United States Department of Agriculture estimates more corn in stock this year. Even though the wet planting season may mean fewer harvested acres, it is thought that lower feed use and lower exports will offset that factor.

It is expected that corn will be harvested from 89.1 million acres this season with an average yield of 156.6 bushels per acre.

The production of corn for this season in the United States is estimated to be 13.95 billion bushels, 858 million bushels more than the record year of 2009-10.

In 2011, the latest year for which statistics were available, Missouri ranked ninth out of the 49 corn-producing states with a production of 349,980,000bushels from 3,070,000 acres harvested. A total of 3,300,000 acreas were planted in corn that year.

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