Crop Progress Update

Nebraska Weather and Crop Progress Update

May 11, 2023

May 11, 2023

It is still dry. Some areas in the SE part of the state have been blessed with timely rains (3 rain events since April 15th—at Plattsmouth totaling about 1.5”), but most areas are still in the grips of dry conditions. It is not the top 2-4 inches of the soil profile that is concerning—it is the subsoil that the crop relies on in July that is the current issue. We have experienced a few nights below freezing and a few days with temperatures above 90… So, it is an average Spring, right? April has been below average for temperature if you consider the averages.

May 4 Drought Chart


April* Summary May Summary
Highest Temperature (°F) 87.0 89.0
Lowest Temperature (°F) 18.0 37.0
Average Temperature (°F) 52.5 60.1
Growing Degree Days 102 100
Total Precipitation (in.) 0.84 0.98

*Beginning April 15, 2023

Observed at: Wilbur Ellis—Plattsmouth, NE (DI4759)


So, if corn was planted on or around April 15, it has accumulated 202 GDD and we have received a total of 1.82 inches of rain since April 15 in Plattsmouth as of May 9.

What about around the state?


Growing Degree Units by Location 4/10 – 4/20 – 5/1/2023


  • Cumulative 120 GDU for Corn Emergence
  • ((Tmax+Tmin)/2)-50=GDD    Tmax=86  Tmin=50
Total GDU Accumulation
Location Total Since 4/10/23 10 Year Average from 4/10 Plant Date: 4/20/23 Plant Date 5/1/23
Beatrice 294 254 161 101
Grand Island 276 227 155 92
Lindsay 257 213 148 93


Early April planted corn has been slow in development and it shows, considering that corn has been planted for the better part of a month. These plants have been frozen off but have come back nicely—see below.

Corn Progress

DKC105-35 Planted April 2, 2023
Photo Taken May 9, 2023

We use GDD to stage corn development all the time, however, there is not yet a model created for soybean. GDD can be used to predict the crop growth stages and help in making crop management decisions which are based on the growth stage of the soybean. Accumulated GDD is the method to determine the heat units accumulated at a given time during the growing season toward the maturity of the crop.

Soy Progress

Asgrow AG34XF3—Cotyledon-Unifoliate—Planted April 24th 2023 Photo taken May 9th 2023)


Some rain has occurred and I’m excited to see there is still a much-needed chance this week—hopefully everywhere. Planting and emergence are trending ahead of the average. Great time to get out and evaluate populations and follow back on challenging fields like these beans below that I almost wrote off 2 weeks ago, patience did pay off and in this case, replant will not be warranted.

Soybean Snap Back


National Crop Progress Summary


This Week Last Week Last Year 5-Year Avg.
Corn Planted 49 26 21 42
Corn Emerged 12 6 5 11
Soybeans Planted 35 19 11 21
Soybeans Emerged 9 NA 3 4


Nebraska Crop Progress Summary


NEBRASKA Corn Soybeans
This Year 56% 36%
Last Year  37% 27%
5-Year Average 51% 29%


Dr. John McNamara // Wilbur-Ellis Agronomist