WASHINGTON — U.S. farmers overcame a cold and wet early spring this year, planting 97.4 million acres of corn and 77.7 million acres of soybeans.
The corn acreage is the highest acreage planted to corn since 1936 and marks a fifth year in a row of corn acreage increases in the United States.
The latest numbers came from the June 28 acreage report released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).
Ohio corn growers reported planting 3.95 million acres, up from 3.9 million in 2012.
For U.S. soybean growers, 2013 is also estimated to be a record-setting year. According to the report, farmers planted a record-high 77.7 million acres of soybeans this season, up 1 percent from last year.
However, by June 16, soybean emergence remained behind the five-year average in most of the soybean-growing states.
In Ohio, farmers report soybean plantings are down slightly, at 4.55 million acres, compared to 4.6 million last year.
Cold, wet spring
This growing season did not get off to a good start. Hampered by cold and wet weather in early spring in much of the major corn-producing region, U.S. growers had only 5 percent of the crop planted by April 28, making it the slowest planting pace since 1984.
In May, however, the weather conditions improved significantly, helping U.S. corn growers to make great strides in planting. The week of May 19, farmers tied the fastest corn planting pace on record, planting 43 percent of the total crop during that one week.
U.S. farmers also increased all wheat acreage this year. All wheat planted area for 2013 is estimated at 56.5 million acres, up 1 percent from last year.
The wheat acreage increased in part due to an early row crop harvest, which allowed farmers to seed more acres.
Ohio’s winter wheat acreage jumped to 710,000 acres, up from 500,000 acres in 2012.
Cotton acres down
In contrast with the increase in acreage for the first three principal crops, U.S. all cotton planted area is significantly lower in 2013, compared with last year.
All cotton acreage is estimated at 10.3 million, 17 percent below 2012 acres.
NASS also released the quarterly Grain Stocks report June 28, showing U.S. corn stocks down 12 percent from June 2012, soybean stocks down 35 percent and all wheat stocks down 3 percent.