farmstead picture
 
 
Resource Homepages  
ISU Extension
Agronomy- Extension
IA State Univ.
IA Dept. of Ag
IA DNR
IA Crop and Pest Mngt. Newsletters
Field and Feedlot
J. Dejong
V. Schmitt
J. Holmes
J. Fawcett
B. Lang
ICM  (IA)
Other States
MN Crop News
C.O.R.N. (Ohio)
Crop Watch (NE)
the Bulletin (IL)
Current topics (KS)
CAT Alert (MSU)
Chat-n-Chew
Purdue
MN Pest Report
SW MN Pest
WI Crop Mngr
ICPM (MO)
Other States
Organic Ag
Weather Data
Iowa Mesonet
IDALS
MN Ag Climate
High Plains RCC
NCDC
Biotechnology
AgBioWorld (for)
ETCgroup (against)
 
Agriculture Search Engines
AgNIC
AgFind
Agriculture Databases
Agrisurf
AgView
AgWeb
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Northwest Iowa Crops Page
Subsoil Moisture
by Todd Vagts
ISU Extension Crops Specialist
Counties Served:  Carroll, Calhoun, Crawford, Ida, Monona, Pocahontas and Sac.

[Home][ISU Extension][IA State University]

Spring 2004 Subsoil Moisture Survey Results

  • Counties:  Carroll, Calhoun, Sac, Crawford, Monona and Ida
  • Date Sampled:  March 31 and April 2

The ISU Extension Spring 2004 subsoil moisture survey has been completed for Carroll, Calhoun, Crawford, Monona, Ida, Sac and Pocahontas counties.  Results form this spring’s sampling indicate that west-central IA is going into the planting season in very good shape with a greater than average amount of moisture stored in the area’s sub-soil.  

Most soils in west-central IA had tremendous recharge of soil moisture following the dry conditions the area experienced last fall.  The area’s soils are holding on average 8.5 inches of plant available water (PAW) which is 73% of capacity.  This compares to only 2.6 inches of PAW last fall and 8.6 inches PAW in the spring of 2003.  The 6-year spring sampling average is 7.9 inches PAW, or 93% of this year’s amount.

Areas with greater than 8 inches PAW include Carroll (9.6 inches), Ida (8.9 inches), Sac (10.2 inches) and Pocahontas (8.1 inches) counties.  Monona (6 inches PAW) and Crawford (7.5 inches PAW) Counties, although only at 51% and 65% capacity respectively, have their best soil moisture conditions since the spring of 1999.   

Areas such as Carroll, Ida and Sac Counties which are near field capacity should use caution with tillage and heavy equipment on the soils to prevent soil compaction.  Additional precipitation in the area could quickly waterlog the soils and the soils may take longer to dry out.  Compaction is a serious detrimental soil condition that will affect the crop for the entire season and potentially for many years. 

Areas such as Monona County that are on the dry side can employ management strategies to conserve soil moisture and reduce drought induced risk for the current cropping season.  Reducing tillage passes and maintaining soil surface crop residue decreases moisture losses due to surface evaporation, keeps soil temperatures cooler, and reduces soil compaction allowing for increased rooting capacity.  Select hybrid/varieties that are more drought tolerant and and increase the diversity of selected hybrids/varieties and crop maturities across the farm.

Soil Profile Graphs
State-wide map and Commentary by Elwynn Taylor

 

2004 Spring Subsoil Moisture Survey Results

        Sample Plant Available Water          60-inch soil profile
County Township Town Crop Date Inches % of Capacity
Carroll Washington Carroll Soybean 04/02/04 9.6 77.3%
             
Crawford Paradise Dow City Corn 04/02/04 7.4 63.3%
      Soybean 04/02/04 7.7 65.8%
        County Average 7.5 64.5%
             
Ida Grant Kiron Soybean 04/02/04 8.1 69.3%
  Maple Battle Creek Corn 04/02/04 9.4 75.5%
  Griggs Holstein Soybean 04/02/04 9.3 75.2%
        County Average 8.9 73.3%
             
Monona Center Castana Corn 04/02/04 6.1 52.5%
      Soybean 04/02/04 6.8 57.9%
      Corn 04/02/04 5.0 42.8%
        County Average 6.0 51.1%
             
Sac Richland Odebolt north Corn 03/31/04 11.3 91.9%
  Eurek Schaller Soybean 03/31/04 9.3 75.1%
  Jackson Sac City Corn 03/31/04 10.2 91.1%
  Sac Auburn Soybean 03/31/04 9.7 100.0%
  Wheeler Odebolt South Corn 03/31/04 10.2 82.6%
        County Average 10.2 88.1%
             
Poke Roosevelt Gillmore City Soybean 04/01/04 8.1 73.4%
             
Calhoun Elm Grove Yetter Corn 04/02/04 6.9 62.5%
             
Area Average         8.5 72.3%

 

Historical Spring Sample Results

      PAW - Inches (Spring) % of Spring Average
County Township Town 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 2004
Carroll Washington Carroll 9.6 12.1 9.5 10.2 6.6   100%
                   
Crawford Paradise Dow City 7.4 6.2 4.6 6.7 6.4 9.4 109%
      7.7 8.3 5.5 7.1 3.8   119%
    County Average 7.5 7.2 5.0 6.9 5.1 9.4 114%
                   
Ida Grant Kiron 8.1 8.4 8.2 4.3 6.9 10.7 104%
  Maple Battle Creek 9.4 9.0 8.2 5.3 6.6 8.3 121%
  Griggs Holstein 9.3 10.3 11.1 6.6 6.4 9.9 104%
    County Average 8.9 9.2 9.2 5.4 6.6 9.6 110%
                   
Monona Center Castana 6.1 6.7 4.5 5.5 2.8   119%
      6.8 5.8 5.5 8.2 4.7   110%
      5.0 4.4 2.0 3.7 2.9   139%
    County Average 6.0 5.6 4.0 5.8 3.5   123%
                   
Sac Richland Odebolt north 11.3 10.3 9.6 10.6 7.4 10.6 114%
Sac Eurek Schaller 9.3 10.1 11.3 9.6 4.7 11.0 100%
Sac Jackson Sac City 10.2 9.1 8.9 8.4 7.1 10.2 114%
Sac Sac Auburn 9.7 8.7 7.6 7.0 4.1 10.6 122%
Sac Wheeler Odebolt South 10.2 8.6 8.9 8.1 6.4 10.6 116%
    County Average 10.2 9.4 9.3 8.8 6.0 10.6 113%
                   
Poke Roosevelt Gillmore City 8.1 11.4 8.8       86%
                   
Calhoun Elm Grove Yetter 6.9 8.9 5.9       96%
                   
Year Average     8.5 8.6 7.5 7.2 5.5 10.1 112%

 

Soil Profile Graphs
 

Todd Vagts
Iowa State University Extension
Field Crops Specialist
1240 D. Heires Avenue 
Carroll, IA 51401 
Office: 712-792-2364; Cell: 712-249-6025;  Fax: 712-792-2366
Email: vagts@iastate.edu  

 

This page last updated on 05/14/04

IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY
OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Non-Discrimination and information