Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Iowa's near record corn crop growing fast, rain needed

It might be time for ethanol stockholders to watch the weather in Iowa.

Monday's U.S. Department of Agriculture Crops and Weather Report says rain is needed to replenish soil moisture supplies as the critical corn pollination period nears, which helps determine future yields. Due to little rainfall statewide in recent weeks, the report said crops are beginning to show stress from drought.

"We don't need another week without rain," McGregor said. "The corn, especially on lighter ground, will start rolling soon to protect itself. We're not overly blessed (with moisture)."

Leaves curl or roll to conserve moisture and protect plants. The less area of a leaf exposed to the sun, the less water will evaporate. However, that also means crop development is reduced, which impacts yields.

From the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier