This week, the National Corn Growers Association kicked off its seventh season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.
To begin a new season, Field Notes met Jim Raben, who farms in southeastern Illinois near the Ohio River.
While he is waiting for drier weather to plant, Jim hopes to begin planting corn within the next two weeks.
“We did work some ground three weeks ago, but then we got rain,” he explained. “As you know, it has been cold since then too. The ground is dry now, but more storms are predicted for tomorrow night. The next time it dries up so that we can get in the field, we will start planting.”
As far back as December, Jim had to make preliminary decisions in terms of which crops he would plant. Given the market conditions, he does intend to increase the percentage of acreage that he dedicates to soybeans in 2017.
Find out more by clicking here to listen to the full interview.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks as Field Notes follows the growers who have opened their farms, families and communities up this year and meet the true faces of modern American agriculture.
CommonGround is a group of farmers connecting with consumers through conversations about science and research and personal stories about food and misinformation surrounding farming. Supported by the NCGA and state corn organizations.
The Soil Health Partnership (SHP) is a farmer-led initiative that fosters transformation in agriculture through improved soil health. Administered by NCGA the partnership has more than 220 working farms enrolled in 16 states. SHP’s mission is to utilize science and data to partner with farmers who are adopting conservation agricultural practices that improve the economic and environmental sustainability of the farm.
The Corn Utilization and Technology Conference (CUTC) is a biennial event happening this June. Learn more.