ROWENA, SD -
Some new numbers show a quickly deteriorating corn crop in South Dakota.
Since the end of May, the National Agriculture Statistics Service in conjunction with the South Dakota Extension Service has been tracking its progress. And while it may come at no surprise, the latest report shows the worst numbers yet this summer.
"It's under stress," Rowena farmer Frank Wright said.
In most portions of South Dakota, you don't have to drive very far to see dried up dead corn stalks swaying over the landscape.
"I mean obviously it's short of moisture and its yields are probably going to be half of what they normally are, maybe less in some spots," Wright said.
According to the National Ag Statistics Service, nearly half of all South Dakota corn is rated poor or very poor. A chart that Donald Guthmiller with the Watertown Extension Service put together compares this year to previous drought years. We are considerably worse than last year and now slightly worse than 2002. But we're still better than the national average and what the area went through in 1988.
"I think that's fairly accurate. I mean there's private forecasters that forecast too but everybody has to go by the government's numbers," Wright said.
And while rain is in the forecast Wright says it will be a little too late for one crop, but there's still hope for another.
"It's pretty much too late for corn. It might add a little test weight; it has a little potential to add a little yield to beans," Wright said.
Even though the crop report numbers are on a steady decline, the future is still looked forward to.
"It'll rain, we just don't know when. I mean, it always does," Wright said.
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