How do you spell plummet? That is certainly what happened to the crop rating for corn in the past week, as USDA dropped the 2012 corn crop from 56 percent in good to excellent condition to 48 percent good to excellent. The amount of corn that is now considered in poor to very poor condition increased from 14 percent last week to 22 percent this week nationally. One month ago, the rating was 72 percent good to excellent and only 5 percent in the poor to very poor category. The downhill slide is gaining momentum from the Cornbelt blast furnace.

In Illinois, topsoil moisture is still a major concern for the entire state. It is currently rated at 52 percent very short, 37 percent short and only 11 percent adequate. Corn conditions were rated at 12 percent very poor, 21 percent poor, 41 percent fair, 23 percent good, and 3 percent excellent. The soybean crop has withstood the conditions slightly better than the corn crop with 11 percent very poor, 20 percent poor, 41 percent fair, 26 percent good, and 2 percent excellent.