The Kentucky soybean crop condition remained steady this past week, with single-crop beans generally doing better than their double-cropped cousins. In Tennessee, double-cropped beans will need more rain soon to prevent major yield losses.

Much of Kentucky received rainfall this past week which benefited all crops. More rain is needed, however, to counteract the hot August temperatures.

In Tennessee, soybean and cotton development were both progressing at a normal pace, with harvest of corn for silage getting under way.

Here’s a compete assessment of the crop situation in the area as reported by the USDA/NASS field offices for the week ending Aug. 3.

Kentucky

Much of the state received badly needed rain this past week, which benefited all crops. More rain is needed throughout the state to counteract the hot August temperatures.

Topsoil moisture was rated as 8 percent very short, 37 percent short, 53 percent adequate, and 2 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture was rated 14 percent very short, 35 percent short, 50 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. There were 5 days suitable for fieldwork.

The majority of field work this past week included mowing pastures and topping tobacco.

As of Sunday, Aug. 3, the tobacco crop condition was reported as 1 percent very poor, 7 percent poor, 28 percent fair, 49 percent good, and 15 percent excellent. Forty-six percent of the burley tobacco was blooming or beyond, behind last year’s average of 59 percent and the five-year average of 60 percent. Burley tobacco topped was at 21 percent compared to last year’s 36 percent and the five-year average of 37 percent. Seventy-six percent of the dark tobacco was blooming or beyond, and 53 percent has been topped. Black shank continues to be the main concern with tobacco, since farmers are spraying for worms.

The corn condition improved with 1 percent rated as very poor, 7 percent poor, 18 percent fair, 41 percent good, and 33 percent excellent. Ninety percent of the corn has silked or was silking as of Sunday, Aug. 3, behind both last year’s 95 percent and the five-year average of 94 percent. Fifty seven percent of the corn was in the milk stage or beyond, compared to 70 percent last year and the five-year average of 71 percent. Thirty-one percent of the corn was in the dough stage or beyond, compared to last year and the five-year average of 46 percent. Six percent of the corn was in the dent stage or beyond, compared to last year’s 23 percent and the five-year average of 22 percent.

As of Sunday, Aug. 3, 64 percent of the soybeans were blooming, behind last year’s 79 percent and the five-year average of 69 percent. Twenty four percent of the soybeans were setting pods, behind last year’s 53 percent and the five-year average of 43 percent. The soybean condition remained steady compared to last week with 2 percent rated very poor, 10 percent poor, 22 percent fair, 42 percent good, and 24 percent excellent. The single-crop soybeans are generally doing better than the double-cropped soybeans, which need more rain for good crop development.

The rains this past week improved the pasture conditions with 3 percent rated very poor, 16 percent poor, 40 percent fair, 38 percent good, and 3 percent excellent. The hay condition remained steady with 3 percent rated percent very poor, 11 percent poor, 40 percent fair, 41 percent good, and 5 percent excellent.

Tennessee

Hot, humid weather was the main theme of Tennessee Agriculture last week as temperatures hovered in the mid-to-high 90s. Widely scattered thunderstorms provided some relief but, by week's end, over half of the land in production was experiencing deficit topsoil moisture supplies.

Crops continued to hold on, however, and were rated in mostly fair-to-good condition. As of Sunday, over a third of the corn crop was denting. Also, the harvest of corn for silage got under way.

Soybean and cotton development were both progressing at the normal pace. Double-cropped soybeans will need more rain soon to prevent major yield losses.

The main tobacco activity was topping and applying sucker control, as nearly half the acreage has been topped.

Summertime heat and a deficit moisture situation are taking their toll on pastures and cattle, but conditions are still mostly fair-to-good.

There were 6 days considered suitable for fieldwork last week. As of Friday, topsoil moisture levels were rated 17 percent very short, 43 percent short, 39 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture levels were rated 24 percent very short, 39 percent short, 36 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Temperatures across Tennessee last week averaged 2 to 6 degrees above normal. Precipitation averaged one-tenth to one-half inch below normal across middle and west Tennessee, while amounts averaged a tenth of an inch above normal across the east.

COUNTY AGENT COMMENTS

"Crops continue to suffer for moisture. Need good rainfall." Tim Campbell, Dyer County

"Farmers are still spraying soybeans for weed control for last time. Corn looks very promising since 1 to 2 inches of rain the past weekend. I have had a few calls from homeowners on large Texas grasshoppers in gardens and ornamentals this week. Late planted crops look very good this week." Steve Glass, Decatur County

"Good rains were received in parts of the county this past week. This was helpful in many situations. However, several areas did not receive any rain and they are beginning to suffer." Troy Dugger, Hickman County

"Most of Davidson County has received abundant rainfall due to scattered thunderstorms the last couple of weeks." David Cook, Davidson County

"Recent showers have helped the corn crop and pastures. Pastures are looking better but weeds spurred on by last year's drought are still a problem." Chris Hicks, Van Buren County

"We need rain. Topsoil moisture is dropping rapidly in the 90-plus degree weather." Mike Heiskell, Claiborne County