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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.


No report this week.


Rain … that's about all I can say for the report that I missed last week. With a total of 14 inches of it, all starting after I wrote my last report. Flooding, road closures, and moving some equipment out of the river bottoms in fear of the Mississippi River and what it was going to do. Thankfully, everyone and everything was OK, and the only thing we have to worry about now is getting our locks open and letting the water leave. As for last week, dry weather, wind and sunshine happened. With the ground drying fast and no real rain in the forecast, this week looks to be a good one. Soybean planting is starting to ramp up, and some guys are even trying to spot in corn that was lost. Waterhemp is the weed of the hour though. Any field that hasn't been sprayed seems to have a ton of them emerging. I can't wait to try out this new dicamba. It might be what brings us back to cleaner fields down here in southern Illinois. We will see in time. Good luck and be safe out there.


No report this week.


Rain, there is just no other way to say it. Since my last report, we have had 4 inches. With another 4 to 6 inches forecast for this weekend, it’s turning out to be a wet spring. The good news is most of the corn that got planted has emerged and looks decent everywhere but the drowned-out spots. When it comes to soybeans, I have not seen any up yet. I have, however, heard of quite a few being planted. Be safe and send us some drier times down here in southern Illinois.