Crop condition likely on the decline in SE Missouri

Monday, August 13, 2007

When the latest report on the condition and progress of Missouri's agricultural crops is released this afternoon, it's likely to contain more bad news than good.

The Missouri office of the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will release the report -- which details the condition of state crops -- at 3 p.m. With the recent hot temperatures and lack of rain experienced in Southeast Missouri, crop condition is likely to decline, said Gene Danekas, the head of the state NASS.

"I think we'll see some dramatic changes in crop condition as well as topsoil and moisture supplies," said Danekas.

Most affected locally is hay and pastureland, said University of Missouri Extension agronomist Gerald Bryan late last week. Dry conditions have led to extremely dry pastures, he said.

Last week's report said pasture condition had experienced a "sharp decline" from the previous week, and listed less than 5 percent of Southeast Missouri's pasture land in "good to excellent" condition. That report said 53 percent of Southeast Missouri's pasture land was in "very poor" condition, while 40 percent was in "poor" condition.

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