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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.


The crops continue to march on to maturity. A little bit of seed corn has been harvested, and a couple of soybean fields might come out this week. Most are a good three weeks away and corn will be at least that far out. With the dry weather, things are changing fast though.


This season is starting to wind down, and cool weather early in the mornings is a constant reminder of that. For now, the cool weather is a godsend. Soils have dried out considerably right when seed size is being determined in both corn and beans. I’m finding some white mold and a few aphids in the soybeans, but nothing to be concerned about for now. Finishing up the last of the summer projects and preparing equipment for harvest are now top priorities.


Spent some time doing my own crop tour this week and found some of the same things that were reported in the Farm Journal Midwest crop tour. I only went into cornfields, and this is what I found: less-than-expected stands with some germination problems and more greensnap than I anticipated. Final stands are struggling to get to 30,000, and our goal is to have at least 32,000. There is an average yield potential, but a fair amount of the corn isn’t much beyond the blister stage. We have a long way to go to achieve that. Cool weather has helped to mitigate it, but the rain we needed two weeks ago still hasn’t shown up. Not much foliar or insect damage.


In a perfect world, we would have gotten an inch or two of rain this week to help finish the corn crop and give soybeans a chance to add some new growth and set more pods. But no such luck. I wanted to get some yield checks from a few cornfields, but somehow, time slipped through my fingers and here it is, time to write my report. Corn planted in June is still in the blister stage, so even by next week, it will be tough to get a handle on its potential.