County Image

Jackson County

Eric Shields

Eric Shields is a second generation CropWatcher who raises corn soybeans and wheat in Jackson and surrounding counties. He is also a farmer-dealer for Asgrow and DeKalb seed, and a part-owner of Shawnee Valley Aviation, a crop dusting service in Southern Illinois. Eric has been farming on his own since 1999. He earned his bachelor’s degree in management, with a minor in agribusiness economics from Southern Illinois University Carbondale.


Jackson County seems to be mostly finished with harvest this year. Notice I said mostly. Myself included, there are still a few farmers out trying to finish up harvest. With the rains and inclement weather of late, it has made it hard to get the soybeans dry enough to harvest. I have heard some farmers drying their soybeans just to get them out of the fields. Having said that, this year has still been a successful one for most of us here in the deep south. Corn and soybean yields have been above average, and the newly planted wheat is looking good so far. I hope this trend continues in the future. Lord knows with the prices the way they are we need every bushel we can muster. Thank you for allowing me to write to you this season. I hope to be able to do it again. God bless, happy holidays, and be safe.


No report


No report


Harvest progress is still moving along, although slowly. Corn in the area is in the final stages of harvest. Soybeans, though, have been the problem child this week. It doesn’t seem like they want to dry down enough to cut. A lot of farmers have been able to wait them out, but some of us needed to cut to get across acres. This has led to a lot of 15, 16, even 17 percent moisture soybeans being harvested. I sure hope everyone’s bin fans stay running. I guess that’s just farmers, though. Adapt and overcome.