Widespread rainfall across Iowa June 24 and more showers last week broke a streak of mainly spotty statewide showers over the past two months, but the consensus among farmers and crop specialists is that Mother Nature continues to offer a “feast or famine” approach to Iowa’s 2023 growing season precipitation thus far.

Under the right cloud, the corn and soybeans look ideal, but miss out only a few miles away, and farmers who planted into dry soil continue to watch the dust fly and crops struggle.

“We are off to a good start so far on my farms,” said Reilly Vaughan, who grows corn and beans near Bagley in central Iowa. He has been fortunate to catch timely rains this growing season.  

“I’ve been lucky, and we look good all things considered. We are behind on rainfall but not terrible — keep getting a half to one inch just in time.”

Further south, the situation is more complicated. Wayne County’s Dan Carpenter has gone weeks without significant rainfall but was hopeful last Thursday and Friday,...