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Boone County

Marshall Newhouse

Marshall Newhouse farms with his wife and daughter’s family. They grow corn, soybeans, wheat and hay, and raise pastured turkeys for the Thanksgiving market. They have just started organic production on a 72-acre field.


After dumping another 2.2 inches out of the gauge Tuesday evening, we are at the point where the corn is ready for summer heat and a reprieve from the rains. My guess is we will be seeing the first tassels within two weeks. Phytophthora is beginning to show. After three weeks of excessive rains, we have been the perfect petri dish for whatever might come our way in the bean fields.


My previous 3.1 inch report was a welcomed rain. This week, friends have reported up to an additional 9 inches, while my gauge added 4.3 inches. Saturated soils have been unable to hold any more water. Creeks and rivers have been way outside their banks for multiple days. Adjacent corn to those waterways have doubled over, but hopefully will be able to get back upright with any dry stretch. Conversely, crops on sloping or well-drained ground are looking quite good. I really don’t like to complain about too much rain, so I’ll suggest it might be too much of a good thing.


Last week, two gauges on the farm measured 1.25 and 3.1 inches. The top end in the county was in the 5-plus area. For us, there were very few ponding areas and no hail. Stories are circulating about huge hail 50 miles west of us, but we enjoyed a great rain. Crops are responding with good growth and darkening color.


A quarter of an inch of rain fell Tuesday and the timing was perfect, as we were just about ready to dust off the cultivator to work in stabilized urea in cornfields that had sat for six days. This is the time of year when the grandkids are running for cover. We’re walking the fields on either side of a wagon, while carrying a 5-gallon bucket and picking up fresh rocks on some of the rolling fields. With this last up-close look at the beans, I’m pleased with the stands. First-cutting hay is all up. Oatlage has been chopped, and sidedressing corn seems to be in the final push.