The Fourth of July has come and gone and most of the U.S. corn crop was not the traditional "knee high." According to USDA's weekly crop progress report, just 6 percent of the U.S. corn crop had begun the silking stage this week. That's compared to 27 percent for this period in 2007, and looking at the five-year average, 19 percent of the crop would be silking by now.

Indeed, USDA's report shows that the overall U.S. crop scenario is continues to run behind schedule. However, the growing conditions have stabilized and are running steady for this time of year. USDA rated 62 percent of the corn crop as "good or excellent." That compares to 61 percent rated at that level in the previous week and 70 percent compared to a year ago.

Soybeans are facing a similar state. As of July 6, 12 percent of the U.S. crop was blooming, versus 33 percent for in the same week last year, and 26 percent for the five-year average. Soybeans rated as "good or excellent" is reported at 59 percent. Last week, that rating went to 58 percent of the crop, and for last year's crop season 65 percent was rated as "good or excellent."

Source: USDA