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Friday, March 2, 2018

Tunnels in Vietnam

Many of us know that the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong hid in tunnels during the War for safety.  The Tunnels were extensive and were used to store supplies and even get around.  My friend, Dr. Ken Olson explored the tunnels last year.  His knowledge of soils undoubtedly gives new insight.  Check out his news release.  Here is the the full article

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Levee Break is a Big Problem.

Len Small Levee District is at the southern tip of Illinois along the Mississippi River.  I am sure the Corps of Engineers has a reason for not fixing it, but it is surprising that Congress has not overridden them with an appropriation.  If the levee is allowed to continue to be open, there is a good chance that the Mississippi River will cut a new channel taking out roads, highways, and farm land.  It will be like trying to put the genie back in the bottle if it decides on a new route.  This is an outrageous decision on the part of the Corps of Engineers.

This spring's flood is creating problems for many because of the open break.  One farmer is selling out to get away while he can.  Read more here .  I wrote on the same subject in 2016 and included a picture of our group standing on the sand washed out of the break

Monday, February 26, 2018

Rainfall and Drought

There has been a lot of concern about drought in Illinois this winter.  Last week, spring showers started early.  I did a soil boring on Friday and subsoil moisture was good to three feet.  We have had a least another inch since then and more is on the way.  For now, it looks like the drought threat is averted.  As always, we will need rain during the growing season to have good yields. 
NOAA Rain - last 7 days.  

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Good Soybean Crop in Mato Grosso

By Eduardo Paim:

Here in Mato Grosso the soybean harvest is going well, the weather forecast said that in February we would have many rains and that would damage the harvest and the quality of the soybean. So far we have not had excessive rains and few producers in the north have lost with the rains that persisted for some days. I believe that Brazil will have a good soybean crop, without reducing its productivity.
Second-crop maize is beginning to be planted and rainfall forecasts indicate that it will be a good crop.

Brazil's soybean productivity is expected to ease Argentina's fall, so South America is going to be average productivity!

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Brazillian Soybean Harvest

January 26, 2018
By Eduardo Paim:

Here in Mato Grosso we started the soybean harvest, as we are in a year of La NiƱa in the north of the state we are seeing farm with averages below 50 sacks of soy by HA and in other farms with averages above 70 sacks per HA. The soy that is being harvested is very beautiful! On average there is a good production, and if nothing else disturb I believe that logos averages will rise, we had good rains in the crops between December 2018 and January 2018. There is forecast of much rain in the North for the beginning of February and this worries a little, if we escape these rains we will have a good harvest of grains. In Argentina and South of Brazil we are seeing the weather spoil the crops more, we still have to see what happens there. If the rest of Brazil produce well, that is what we expect we will have a small break in the average of South America.

There were talks of decrease of maize area second crop because the rains were slow to arrive and delayed the planting of soybeans of the first crop. With whom I say they are going to keep the same corn planted area from the year 2017 for the second harvest, if everything goes well with rains we will have lots of corn!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

GMO Labeling

As I was walking through the store this week the label on the "Simply Orange' brand of juice caught my eye.  It was labeled Non-GMO.  This is certainly not a lie, but very misleading labeling because there is no such thing as GMO oranges.  They are trying to get people to buy their product or pay extra for it because of a misleading statement.  I saw their TV ad  a few days later and they were touting their honesty.  I do not consider this an honest way to sell a product. 

Further thought has lead me to consider that we may be better off if this type of labeling was regulated.  In the past, I have said that consumers should educate themselves and buy accordingly.  I think it might be better to have consistent standards rather than let companies mislead their potential customers. 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Crop Progress in Brazil

By Eduardo Paim

Here was a big concern for La Nina, but we are having good rains in Brazil in general, I believe we are calmer with the weather than we were 30 days ago. In Argentina, there are predictions of hot flashes starting on January 11.
Here in Brazil, at least for the time being, we have a very good climate for the development of soybeans, but for the second harvest corn there should be a reduction of planted area due to the delay in soybean planting.