August 22nd, 2012
Despite some dismal corn yields on my route of Day 2 of the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour, something very exciting happened for my group. And no, I do not mean the Beef Manhattan on special at a greasy spoon in Linden, Indiana. We saw some dust flying and we went after it. Harvest has officially started in Indiana. See for yourself what we saw and find out what the yields were on the combine monitor for that Williamsport, Indiana farmer.
On my route yesterday I was joined by Iowa farmer Chris Barron and as we made our way across Indiana his biggest concern was stalk quality. I asked him about that topic.
Brazilian consultant Marcos Rubin couldn’t believe how poorly the soybeans have come along in Indiana.
We are told we will see more of that as we head further west. Today we start out in Bloomington, Illinois and end up in Iowa City for the night. Iowa should be interesting, from what I am hearing. If you thought Indiana and Ohio were variable, I guess we haven’t seen anything yet.
8:25 am – Already through two fields and for the first time this week my jeans are still dry. Very little dew this morning and a beautiful sunrise over grain farms and wind farms.
We have some good corn numbers from McLean and Logan Counties in Illinois this morning with an average corn yield estimate of 156. The beans have been so so as this area has had very little ran and not as much heat over the growing season as the southern part of the state.
9:15am – On to Mason County, Illinois we head and it was a tale of two fields on the corn front. The first corn field in the county, which are in the picture below, is slated to yield close to 18 bushels per acre. While I was in that field I had someone join me. Japanese beetles and some disease pressures were prevalent.
Down the road 15 miles in the same county was one of the best looking fields I have seen thus far. That field will get 199 to the acre, according to our estimates.
As for the beans so far this morning, we are averaging about 832 pods in a 3 square feet area after 4 stops. That is a big smaller than Indiana’s average of 1033 yesterday.
9:32 am – We ran across many harvested fields in Fulton County, Illinois just after crossing the Illinois River. That is where we saw Havanna, Illinois farmer Steve Specketer and had the chance to chat.
10:17 am – Our scout leader today is Dick Overby with Rain and Hail, LLC in Kenyon, Minnesota and I took the opportunity to ask him about what many farmers are questioning…crop insurance.
11:20 am – Great looking fields in Knox County, IL this morning. Farmers here knifed to save some yields by the looks of things, the cracks have only widened due to the lack of rain. These 3 ears represent a field in this county that has given me the highest number that I have seen so far on the tour at 235!
The ground was good on both sides of the road and the beans showed it as well. Although their 935 pods in a 3 feet square are shy of the average we have seen over the past 2 days, they are above average for our route today.
1:30 pm - Our last stop in Illinois was in Henry County. As you can see, our sample of ears is healthy and great in size. One of the reasons for that is that this particular farmer choose to go with a lesser population count. With that said, this field is slated to yield 144 bushels to the acre. That number my sound lower that the corn looks, but this was a 300 acre field so the time spend in the cab next month won’t be too bad.
2:10 pm – We have crossed over…the Mississippi River that is. Scott County was our first stop. We were told the Hawkeye state could be even more variable that Ohio and Indiana and so far we have seen tall green corn and black dead corn. So far our two stops have been par for the course at an average of 110 bushels to the acre.
Bean have been spotty but what we have pulled out of the field has pulled down our daily average. For Iowa alone, bean pods in a 3 feet square have averaged only 700. As you can see, they look great from afar, but far from great. We are noticing the same thing we saw on day 1 in Ohio as the first 6 to 7 nodes have no pods due to the heat stress put on them early in the growing season. That will diminish your numbers quickly.
4:20 pm – Finally back in a cell zone and able to give you an update. Cedar County was our last one of day 3 and the 4 fields there, two corn and two bean, checked out to be right about average for our day. For corn the number we came up with on our route was 124 for corn and around 800 for a bean pod count in a 3 x 3 ft area.
The last bean field of the day was average, even after an unusual find with one of our plants. Scout leader Dick Overby was amazed and I share why in the video below.
The results for the state of Illinois have been announced tonight at our meeting in Iowa City, Iowa.
Corn = 121.60 bushel an acre
Beans = 944.05 pods in a 3 x 3 square