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Lee County

Larry Hummel

Larry Hummel of Dixon has been farming with his brother since 1975 in the corner of Lee, Ogle, and Whiteside counties. They raise corn, soybeans, and a little wheat.


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It's tough to stay positive about the farm economy with local bids for soybeans now under $8 and corn prices struggling to stay above $3. But I also know that there are cycles to everything. Hopefully, prices have bottomed out and can start building a base for higher prices and a profit.


Rain has been the name of the game. Another 1.3 inches last week brings the total for the last 30 days to a little more than 14 inches. A few of our no-till fields were firm enough to get in and spray, but the rest are tough to walk in, let alone drive on. More than a few sprayers have needed to be rescued from the middle of a wet spot. This might be the year that a fungicide application pays off big. Japanese beetles are just starting to appear, but that’s about it on the insect front.


It appears the monsoon season has settled in northern Illinois. The previous week’s 4 to 5 inches of rain was matched last week. I felt pretty good two weeks ago about the small amount of soybeans left to be sprayed, but that has been replaced with a sour feeling in my stomach as the weeds continue to grow unabated.