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Boone County

Brian Sisson

I've been working as a seed company District Sales Manager for the past 6 ½ years in North Central Illinois. The family farm operation is located in southeast Boone County, Illinois. The original home farm has been in my family since 1840. The family farm is a cash grain - corn/soybean operation. My father and uncle are the principal operators of farm. I am working my way into becoming a partner in the farm operation since I graduated from college in 2008.


The area opened the month of June as one of the driest on record. While July-like temperatures and sunny weather helped move crops along nicely, some fields were starting to show signs of water stress. Sidedress and post-spraying were in full swing until rains finally came into the area Tuesday and Wednesday. Anywhere from 2 to 5 inches of rain fell across most of Boone and McHenry counties. There was some wind and hail damage from these storms.


A dry weather pattern finally has arrived, allowing many around the area to finish planting corn and soybeans. Early evaluations on corn stands show that corn planted in April through early May are variable, while corn planted the second half of May has excellent stands. A few producers have started to sidedress their early-planted corn, and many others were able to get their first cutting of hay baled. The wheat crop continues to move along fairly rapidly.


After rains last weekend, the area was finally able to have an extended stretch to finish corn planting, along with getting a good start planting soybeans. Corn planting is about 95 percent done along the state line with soybeans about 30 to 40 percent done. Many were able to get their first cutting of hay baled this week, and tonnage reports are excellent. The wheat crop is fully headed and continues to look excellent. Many are hoping to finish planting next week. Stay safe this spring.


Not much was accomplished after rain fell for the first half of the week. We are about 60 to 70 percent done on corn and about 10 to 15 percent done on soybeans. There are several growers who still haven’t been able to turn a wheel yet this spring. The next big issue up for the area, besides finishing planting, is post-spraying corn with nitrogen and pre-emergence herbicides. Stay safe this spring.