Berwyn, PA (PRWEB) April 30, 2012
Featuring satellite imagery to measure plant vigor on the ground, Planalytics latest GreenReport newsletter provides clear evidence of early season crop activity, including the possibility that some areas were impacted by lack of moisture or freezing temperatures after planting.
According to Jed Lafferty, Managing Director, Life Sciences at Planalytics, Inc., the Berwyn, PA based business weather intelligence firm, "the latest satellite pictures from our partners at TerraMetrics Agriculture confirm that farmers in some areas of the country got a head start on planting corn this year. That's the good news. The bad news is that the same images reveal parts of the country where crops like winter wheat, alfalfa and possibly even some corn, were nipped recently by freezing temperatures or were unable to develop due to dry soils."
Unusually warm temperatures in March and early April sent farmers and their planters into fields in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Michigan, and Indiana much earlier than usual. Generally speaking, the longer the growing season, the higher the crop yields at harvest. "That's not always the case," Lafferty adds, pointing out that normal last-freeze dates in most regions of the corn belt often occur in late April or early May. Several hours of below freezing temperatures can kill a crop or at a minimum, stunt its growth. "Still, it's hard to tell a farmer on a beautiful, eighty-five degree day in early April that they should stay indoors."
On the Greenness map, green areas represent healthy plant material, including deciduous vegetation such as trees. "In Iowa, Illinois and Indiana," Lafferty points out, "much of the land mass is devoted to agriculture. Where you see green, that's a pretty good indication that you're looking at corn fields." Further south in the Plains states of Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas, green areas are more likely winter wheat or pasture crops. It is across Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio where evidence of freeze damage or dryness is evident.
According to Fred Gesser, Planalytics agri-business weather meteorologist, "the brownish areas in eastern Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana are in areas that were lush with greenness two weeks ago. Those are the same areas that saw overnight temperatures in the mid twenties back around the 19th through the 21st of the month. You can also see evidence of dryness where temperatures were not a threat. Regardless of the reason for the decreased Greenness over the last two weeks, the GreenReport shows that there is a problem."
How these different weather factors impact corn yields remains to be seen, Lafferty points out. "Our latest GreenReport Winter Wheat Yield forecast which is based on these satellite images suggests that the 2012 crop may be one of the biggest in years. Corn and Soybean yield forecasts will be released to our clients on June 1st."
To view the latest GreenReport and receive a complimentary 3-week subscription, please visit http://www.planalytics.com/green.
About Planalytics Inc.
Planalytics Inc. is the singular global source of Business Weather Intelligence – the actionable information companies need to understand and optimize the impact of weather on their business. Powered by an unparalleled database of weather’s financial and volumetric impacts, proprietary forecasting technologies and market-specific expertise, Planalytics’ Business Weather Intelligence is essential to any company, in any industry, looking to effectively shape strategies, pinpoint opportunities and make more profitable decisions. For more information, visit http://www.planalytics.com.