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Adams County

Brent Clair

Brent Clair farms about 750 acres of corn, soybeans and wheat near Loraine. He is also a private meteorologist, assisting the Adams County Emergency Management Agency with coordinated response before, during and after major weather events. He serves on the Adams County Farm Bureau Board, and is working to get his private pilot’s license.


Last Wednesday, you would have thought you went back in time to an old-fashioned dust storm. In all my years, I have never witnessed anything like that. Granted, chalk it up to farmers doing their part in conservation, but when Mother Nature throws winds that hard in the middle of the day, it's gonna get dusty. Some of the earlier-planted soybeans are having a tough time breaking through the hard crust and could use a little moisture to help them out. The good news is that most of the soybeans got in the ground last week. We had some very good drying days after the midweek storm, and everyone was back in hard at it Monday (May 15). Judging from around the local area, we are getting close to completion. Corn is really starting to perk up. Already seeing some early sidedress applications on some fields. Wheat is heading out almost perfectly and starting to fill. For a while, some of the later fields didn't look too promising, but the past few weeks have brought it back into the game. Hope everyone gets close to done this week.


It's been a quiet week for the most part. A lot of the fields are still very much waterlogged, but started to dry out with almost perfect weather. There were a few places that allowed some soybeans to get in the ground. Cover crop fields are really showing their benefits as the heavy rains didn't wash ditches like in the past. Another storm system came through midweek that varied in amounts. Most of the county had around .5 of an inch, but different areas got more than 1 inch, and then there were spots that barely got a quarter.


It rained, enough said. We were pretty fortunate in our area that most reporters said anywhere from 4 to 5 inches of rain. That is nothing compared to our fellow farmers further south. Our thoughts and prayers are with those who are affected by the river flooding and flash flooding in southern Illinois. As the week progressed, we avoided the second round of heavy rains, and sunshine and gusty winds allowed soils to dry rapidly. Going into the weekend, with sunshine and warm temperatures, we expect corn that has been sitting for a while to start perking up. If all goes well, next week should start seeing planters rolling in the fields again, and soybean progress should start as well. Please be safe out there, everyone.


Mother Nature has decided to put planting on hold for the foreseeable future. But that doesn't mean a lot of progress wasn't completed last week. A majority of Adams and Hancock County farmers told me corn is done or is down to the last few acres. Larger acreage producers and those with 100 percent corn are still moving, but that is to be expected. What is more amazing is the amount of soybeans going into the ground. Those producers who were done with corn a good while ago couldn't resist the good soils and warm weather to put some beans in. It's hard to say how the cold rains of late will affect those acres. But it's only April; lots of time to grow or replant. Spraying operations were going full bore, but wind did not help matters. Cooler temperatures are slowing some herbicides, which is making a few farmers nervous. The next few days will be interesting in the weather world. Forecasts have been going back and forth with significant rains for the weekend (April 29-30), and some models are showing severe weather as a possibility. Be safe out there, everyone!