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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Illinois Ag Director Resigns

By now the Ag world has learned the Illinois Director of Agriculture Phillip Nelson and State Fair Director Patrick Buchan have both submitted apparently coerced resignations.  Lots of information is circulating directly from Buchcan.  This Prairie Farmer Article tells more.  If Buchan is telling the truth, and I have no to disbelieve him, they were fired for trying to run a clean program.  It is a real shame that such a prominent advocate for agriculture does not receive the support of his boss.  I am sure that Nelson supported the Rauner campaign, because he thought he would be good for agriculture.  This is another nail for the coffin of our leading industry.  Coming on the heals of recent University of Illinois announcements concerning education opportunities for farmers, it looks like  a woeful and willful neglect.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Friday Night Lights

Friday Night Football is a big deal in small towns.  Hillsboro FFA served Pork Patties, Boneless Pork Chops and Marcoot Dairy's Custom Made Ice Cream.
FFA Cookout 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Combine Fire

I happened upon a combine that had caught fire.  You can see the burned spot to the right.  The white truck is the repair truck.  It looked like they would be able to get back to harvest today.  This is the second combine fire I have heard of this fall.  The other one was a total loss.  Be careful out there.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Soybean Harvest

Soybean is starting in our area, but many soybeans are not ready.  There is a lot of corn being harvested too right now.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

University is Collecting Grain Samples

University of Illinois is collecting grain samples to help them determine nutrient removal rates.  If you would like to include samples from your farm click on the University of Illinois Link.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Sampling Near Greenfield

Harvest was going strong near Greenfield.  Both Corn and Soybeans are being harvested.  Yield are some better than a disaster, but far off of last year.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Harvest Progress

I delivered recommendations in West Alton Area today  There was not much corn harvested until Bethalto.  We have some customers done or near done in the West Alton Area.  Over all I would guess about 40% of the corn is harvested in that area.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


This weekend we went to Sycamore to visit family.  One of our stops was the Kuipers Family Farm, mostly to buy apples.  The farm is very much a tourist destination with many activities.  It is located near Maple Park, IL west of Elburn.  I was impressed with number of people visiting and also with the variety of activities available.  It seems more like a farm amusement park than just a place to go for produce.  Click on the link above to find out more.  Extension Service has a listing of many agri-tourism businesses in Illinois.  

Monday, September 14, 2015

Corn and Soybeans together?

Dave Brandt a leading Cover Crops advocate and farmer, is trying to grow soybeans as a nitrogen source on his farm.  He seeds the soybeans between the corn rows.  It is an interesting idea that Brandt says is working.  Read more in Farm Futures.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Update From Brazil

By Eduardo Paim,

It is dropping a good rain in Mato Grosso right now, but most of the state's southern producers will not start planting because weather forecasts say the rains will only have continuous flow after October 15. In upstate planting of soybeans will start in about two weeks, the rains will start there first.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Crop Update

I took a trip to Brown County today to discuss some livestock issues with a customer.  Almost all corn is mature.  We have had over 3 inches of rain in my area, but much less in the Brown County area.  Burrus seeds was harvesting seedcorn in the Meredosia area,  I wanted to take a picture, but it was in a one lane construction zone.  Others were also harvesting along highway 104.

Some soybean fields have dropped leaves and are nearly ready for harvest.  Others are green and various stages in between.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Cover crop Planting Time

We are fast approaching the end of the covercrop seeding time for many crops.  If you are flying one radish, annual ryegrass, or many other crops, now is the time.  The recent rain should be advantageous, especially if the seed is out there,  Cereal Rye can be planted as late as Thanksgiving, but if those fields will be planted to corn, be sure and kill it early in the spring.  Soybeans can be planted into rye more easily.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Capping Off Summer Celebrations

One of the highlights of the Witt Labor Day Celebration is the farmers showing off their restored classic tractors.  Below is a sampling.  Witt Labor Day Celebration is also notable for the number of politicians who show up.  Congressman Rodney Davis was working the crowd before the parade.  Witt Lions Club has the best corndogs and very good funnel cakes.  
Dale Darr's Ford 8N

Farmall Super M

John Deere 720

Oliver 77

Congressman Rodney Davis

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Passing of the seasons.

A late summer view of Route 66 Weigh Station Prairie North of Litchfield.  The ditch area through the middle is healing better than expected.  Laborious and costly teasel control seems to have been effective.  This would look better if we had been able to burn this spring.

Friday, September 4, 2015

What is Going On Out There Today

Part of my day was spent delivering reports.  One client was filling his silo.  He said the moisture was perfect, but it might have been Ok if he had started a bit sooner.  He feeds distiller's grain and silage mixed.  One client was baling hay today.  Weather is perfect for hay baling.  Another client was building a small building.  His said corn is 24% moisture, but at this early date he prefers to dry it some more in the field.  Many of the bigger farmers including a few clients are not waiting for dry down.  They have a lot of ground to cover and prefer to start when corn reaches maturity.  Yield reports are 10% or more off of last year.  One client said hillsides are not any better than flat land.  I am thinking side hill seeps affected his corn.  Last weeks stalk tests lead me to believe stalk quality is not the best.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Farm Progress Show

I spent most of the day on Tuesday at the Farm Progress show in Decatur.  As always there is lots of big equipment to see.  I spent the morning helping out at the soil pit near the conservation tent.  It may surprise some people how many foreign visitors we have for the show.  We had materials in Spanish, Portuguese, and English to hand out.

In the afternoon, I wandered the grounds sort of at random.  The bigger the company, the bigger the tent.  This is the "greatest spectacle in agriculture."  I meandered thru the varied  industry tent.  I visited with  friends, and I looked for "new" stuff.  The Crary wind header system was one of the most interesting products displayed.  It adds wind to reduce header loss.

It was a very hot day, so my favorite display was the misting fan at the AGCO display.  Thanks to all the vendors who had free water.  I drank 6 bottles and only had to pay for one.