This week, the National Corn Growers Association continued 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.
Early this week, Field Notes caught up with Jim Raben who farms in southern Illinois. As a changing weather forecast loomed on the horizon, he provided insight into how harvest has gone thus far on his farm and for his neighbors.
“There is quite a bit of harvesting going on in my area already, but most people aren’t moving very quickly” he explained. “I think many farmers are waiting for the corn to dry down further in the field.
“Early season moisture did make an impact. We had problems early on with standing water, which dropped the yields. Then, we have had dry spells ever since that have hurt the yield on the ridge-type ground.
Overall, I think it is going to be an average to above average year for the corn we planted earlier in the spring. I cannot speak to the yields on the corn we replanted because there was a severe heat issue around pollination.”
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Stay tuned over the coming weeks as Field Notes follows the growers who have opened their farms, families and communities this year to 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.