- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 20, 2014

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Corn growers in Illinois and elsewhere are nearing the homestretch of their spring planting.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says 84 percent of Illinois’ corn crop is now in the ground. That’s 11 percentage points above the average pace of the previous five years. Last year at this time, just two-thirds of the state’s crop has been planted. That’s because one of the wettest springs on record got farmers in many states off to the slowest start in decades.

Roughly 60 percent of Illinois’ corn crop already has emerged, up 15 percent from the five-year average and nearly twice the national rate.

Nationwide, nearly three-quarters of the corn crop is planted.

Missouri growers have 92 percent of their corn crop in the ground.

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