The last week was a big one for corn farmers’ planting progress, with the planting pace now 10% higher than the previous five-year average, according to Monday’s USDA-NASS Crop Progress report. Farmers planted almost 30% of the nation’s corn crop last week and while that’s still two percent behind last year’s pace, the 46% number is well ahead of the 36% previous average. Soybean planting surged beyond last year’s pace and at 24% complete, is well ahead of the 11% previous five-year average for this week. At 16% complete, cotton planting is on par with the previous average after a week of relatively slow progress. Sorghum planting was slow last week and now sits at 20% complete while rice planting moved to 64% complete compared to the previous average pace of 60%. Now that the majority of the U.S. corn crop is in the ground, attention is starting to turn to emergence, which remains slightly behind the average pace. Meanwhile, crop-watchers are keeping a close eye on winter wheat conditions in the Plains, where overall quality ratings fell slightly in Monday’s Crop Progress report. See more highlights from Monday’s report.