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USDA report offers look ahead at what’s being planted in 2020

Expect more corn acres in New York and Pennsylvania and more soybeans in Maryland and Pennsylvania.

Chris Torres

April 8, 2020

2 Min Read
Planter at work in a no-till field
READY FOR PLANTING: Farmers in the Northeast are making final preparations to start heading out into the fields. The USDA estimates more corn in New York and Pennsylvania, and more soybeans in Maryland and Pennsylvania. fotokostic/Getty Images

Farmers are expected to plant 8% more corn and 10% more soybeans this year, according to the USDA’s Prospective Plantings Report.

Corn acreage is estimated to be 97 million acres, up 8% from last year, and soybean acreage 83.5 million acres, up 10% from last year. It looks like farmers in the Midwest want to make up for the prevented plant acres last year by planting more this year.

But what are farmers thinking locally? Here is a look at expected plantings in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic, listed by commodity:

Corn

Pennsylvania farmers are expected to plant 1.48 million acres, up 2% from last season. New York farmers are expected to plant 1.18 million acres, up 16% from last year.

Maryland farmers are expected to plant 500,000 acres, down 2% from last year. Delaware farmers are expected to plant 170,000 acres, down 8% from last year.

Other states in alphabetical order:

  • Connecticut, 23,000 acres, unchanged

  • Maine, 28,000 acres, down 3%

  • Massachusetts, 16,000 acres, up 14%

  • New Hampshire, 12,000 acres, unchanged

  • New Jersey, 90,000 acres, up 17%

  • Vermont, 81,000 acres, unchanged

  • West Virginia, 56,000 acres, up 8%

Soybeans

Pennsylvania and Maryland grow the most soybean acres in the region. Pennsylvania farmers are expected to plant 630,000 acres, up 2% from last year. Maryland farmers are expected to plant 470,000 acres, down 2%.

0406W-3629B-1540x1769.jpg

New York farmers are expected to grow 290,000 acres, up 23% from last year. Delaware farmers are planting 145,000 acres, down 6% from last year.

New Jersey farmers are expected to plant 80,000 acres, down 16%.

Hay

Both New York and Pennsylvania are expected to see more acres in hay production this season.

The report states that Pennsylvania farmers will grow 1.27 million hay acres, up 5%. New York farmers are expected to grow 1.2 million acres, up 3%.

Other states in alphabetical order:

  • Connecticut, 53,000 acres, up 13%

  • Delaware, 12,000 acres, down 14%

  • Maine, 105,000 acres, down 5%

  • Maryland, 190,000 acres, up 1%

  • Massachusetts, 48,000 acres, down 6%

  • New Hampshire, 45,000 acres, down 8%

  • New Jersey, 90,000 acres, down 1%

  • Vermont, 180,000 acres, up 13%

Barley

State production in alphabetical order:

  • Delaware, 22,000 acres, up 5%

  • Maine, 13,000 acres, down 19%

  • Maryland, 43,000 acres, up 34%

  • New York, 10,000 acres, unchanged

  • Pennsylvania, 40,000 acres, up 14%

Oats

State production in alphabetical order:

  • Maine, 22,000 acres

  • New York, 59,000 acres, up 5%

  • Pennsylvania, 90,000 acres, up 6%

Winter wheat

State production in alphabetical order:

  • Delaware, 55,000 acres, down 8%

  • Maryland, 345,000 acres, unchanged

  • New Jersey, 25,000 acres, up 32%

  • New York, 160,000 acres, up 78%

  • Pennsylvania, 240,000 acres, up 33%

Read more about:

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About the Author(s)

Chris Torres

Editor, American Agriculturist

Chris Torres, editor of American Agriculturist, previously worked at Lancaster Farming, where he started in 2006 as a staff writer and later became regional editor. Torres is a seven-time winner of the Keystone Press Awards, handed out by the Pennsylvania Press Association, and he is a Pennsylvania State University graduate.

Torres says he wants American Agriculturist to be farmers' "go-to product, continuing the legacy and high standard (former American Agriculturist editor) John Vogel has set." Torres succeeds Vogel, who retired after 47 years with Farm Progress and its related publications.

"The news business is a challenging job," Torres says. "It makes you think outside your small box, and you have to formulate what the reader wants to see from the overall product. It's rewarding to see a nice product in the end."

Torres' family is based in Lebanon County, Pa. His wife grew up on a small farm in Berks County, Pa., where they raised corn, soybeans, feeder cattle and more. Torres and his wife are parents to three young boys.

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