Are you taking an out-of-state summer vacation?|
Story Archives: Hot, dry weather good for corn harvest
- 2013 - 385 articles
- 2012 - 1160 articles
- 2011 - 1177 articles
- 2010 - 810 articles
- 2009 - 779 articles
- 2008 - 949 articles
|Hot, dry weather good for corn harvest|
The hot, dry weather that has hampered much of the soybean crop in Franklin Parish could mean an easier harvest for the region's corn crops.
Ryan Ellington said a few corn producers have been able to get into the fields and begin cutting corn. However, a larger number are waiting for a bit of relief from the humidity so that their crops will dry down.
"The humidity is keeping it from drying down like it needs to," said Ellington, who operates a grain storage facility in Franklin Parish.
Ellington said he's expecting the harvest to get underway relatively quickly.
"By this weekend, I'm hoping it's going to be dry enough for folks to get in the fields and start cutting," Ellington said.
In the northern parts of Franklin Parish, rainfall levels have been lower and corn is already rolling in, according to agriculture consultant Chad Nelson.
Nelson estimated 15 to 20 percent of the corn in northern Franklin has been harvested so far.
"Everybody will get started this week for sure," Nelson said.
Both Ellington and Nelson projected a robust corn crop this year. However, neither expected corn yields to surpass last year's record-breaking harvest.
Ellington said most of his producers are pulling in between 120 and 125 bushels per acre on non-irrigated land and 160 to 180 bushels an acre off land that was irrigated.
"It's not going to be the crop we had last year but it's still going to be a decent crop, the way it's looking now," Ellington said.
A new storage pod in the Franklin Industrial Park should speed up the harvest and processing of corn, Ellington said.
Last year, area producers were forced to store their crops in labor-intensive ground bags. Those facilities were able to accommodate only two trucks per hour.
However, Ellington said his new pod in the industrial park would be able to handle 8 to 10 trucks an hour.
"So we should be able to speed up getting the farmers unloaded and back into the field," Ellington said.
That means the corn harvest could move faster than last year's. Nelson said he estimated the bulk of the harvest would take more than a month.
However, that won't signal the end of corn harvesting for 2008, as some area producers double-cropped wheat with corn. Those corn crops aren't expected to reach maturity for another month.
While preparations are underway for the corn harvest, soybean producers will also begin bringing in the first of that crop.
Nelson said some area soybean producers began applying harvest aids to their crops this week.