Billy Pontius, Fairfield County, July 9


“We haven’t had rain since Friday June 29 and we only got four tenths out of that. It is crucial right now. I have checked some pollination and there are some pretty serious problems in pollination on some of this corn. Being 100 degrees and pollinating is not good. It has been pollinating for about two weeks. I would say maybe 20% never even pollinated. Even if it did pollinate, if it doesn’t get any rain it will abort the kernels.

“A lot of the corn is fired and is turning brown halfway up the stalk. Some plants may not even have an ear on them. A substantial amount of rain is the only thing that is gong to help this corn. Even then, I think we’d be lucky to hit 150-bushel corn. It is hard to guess, but I would say 100- to 150-bushel corn would catch most of my crop this year.

“Some of the beans still look good, but they are not very tall so they don’t have a lot of flowering on them. If you don’t have a lot of flowering, then you don’t get a lot of pods. If we catch some rains in late July and early August, it will really help the beans. If we don’t have a rain for the next 10 days, I’d say our corn crop is shot.

The total we’ve had is an inch and a half since we got done planting beans, and lot of those little rains never even made it to the roots.

“I know guys west of the river on gravel are in worse shape. It is like a broken record — dry, dry, dry, dry, dry. It hasn’t really changed all summer.”

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