Blog: Matt Reese

Beware of heat for the rest of July

It is certainly hot and humid week for baling hay, but many people are doing just that around Ohio.

We bale around 20 acres of mostly small square bales and have been hitting it hard so far this week with a late second cutting following the very extended period of wet weather that bogged down any attempts to cut hay earlier. Yesterday I was out on the wagon starting to stack the second load when I got a bit dizzy. At first I thought I would push on and then better judgment set in. I went and sat in the shade and drank water for about 10 minutes and I was fine after that. Then I drove the tractor for the next load.

Be careful in this intolerably humid heat that looks like it will be sticking (literally) around for a while. Jim Noel, with the National Weather Service, says that the remainder of July will be on the warm side.

“The core of a hot high pressure dome will be centered in the Rockies the next two weeks. At times, there will be pieces of this high pressure that extends across the corn and soybean region including Ohio,” he wrote in this week’s CORN Newsletter. “Overall, expect above normal temperatures through the end of July. The week of July 15 will be hot with highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s. A cool down will come later this weekend into early the week of July 22. This will be the start of the pattern of several hot days followed by a few warm days followed by several hot days again. Due to soil moisture being good, we do not see temperatures above 95. However, lots of very warm overnight lows in the 70s are expected in the next two weeks.”

Noel says a front will be moving through this weekend that will likely bring some showers. The state average moisture will be up to 2 inches for the remainder of the month. The candidates for the highest rainfall totals (2 to 3 inches) are in the north and the east of Ohio.

In the meantime, try to keep your livestock cool and, when baling hay, take some breaks to stay cool and drink plenty of water. And, if you are looking for something to do, stop by and help bale some hay this week. We will be working on hay and straw tonight, so come on over. You’re welcome in advance for the wonderful, character-building experience beneath what looks to be another scorching hot summer sun.

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Author: Matt Reese

I grew up on a small farm in northwest Ohio and spent most of my youth writing, doodling, taking pictures, reading and exploring the surrounding farmland. With a family full of teachers, I also grew up around a culture supportive of education. I was active in athletics in high school before graduating from Ohio State University where I studied agricultural communications. This led to my career in agricultural journalism.

I continue to work on the family Christmas tree farm in Hancock County. I married my wonderful wife, Kristin, in 2002. We live on a small farm in Fairfield County with sheep, rabbits and chickens. We have a daughter Campbell Miriam who was born in the fall of 2007 and a son Parker Matthew born in August of 2009. We are active in our local church and with numerous other organizations. I help with the agricultural program at Ohio Christian University in Circleville as well.

I have worked for Ohio’s Country Journal since 1999. I also write a column for numerous newspapers around Ohio, Fresh Country Air and do freelance writing and photography work. I have written and self-published six books to date. To find my books, visit and search for “Matt Reese.”

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