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Macon County

Tom Ritter

Tom Ritter is a long-time Cropwatcher and farms near Blue Mound in Macon County.


A week of dry weather got combines rolling. Definitely less than 20 percent of the corn has been harvested. Many have started and stopped numerous times. Basically dealing with too high a moisture of corn. Most people have said soybeans were about what they expected or a little bit better. Corn yields have been all over the board. The four to five days of 90-degree temperatures definitely lowered the moisture content of corn, and farmers will be going full throttle next week.


Beautiful week for work with very moderate temperatures. Labor Day was by far the best drying day we’ve had for corn in probably three weeks. Unfortunately, it only lasted for one day. No activity in the fields. May be a few starting this week, but it will probably be the week after before the majority of farmers try. A lot of 27 to 35 percent corn out there. April-planted beans are maturing rapidly. Probably see some of those cut within the next 10 days. The majority of them are still real green and will be harvested in early October.


We had a beautiful week of weather for the Farm Progress Show. The show site received 1.7 inches of rain Monday night (Aug. 28), which made it a little tacky Tuesday morning. Area rain reports varied anywhere from .2 of an inch to 5.5 inches. Those two reports were within 4 miles of each other. So, the story continues as the whole summer has -- the rain has been very varied. Had excellent crowds at the Farm Progress Show. Due to the cooler weather in August, harvest has definitely been delayed. When we are normally losing a point of moisture a day with 85- to 90-degree temperatures and a breeze, we are now getting cloudiness and a lot cooler temperatures prolonging harvest. It will probably be at least two weeks before almost everyone starts going hot and heavy. We are starting to see April-planted beans start to dull down and turn a little yellow.


Some areas caught .2 to .3 of an inch of rain since the last report. Overall, conditions remain pretty dry. Corn is showing some definite signs of maturing. Some areas with lighter ground or stalks that ran out of nitrogen have really turned brown, but most fields still have a fair amount of green. The consensus is, it’s probably going to be the second week, if not the third week of September, before harvest really gets going in full swing. Farmers are busy preparing for the upcoming harvest. Hope everyone comes down and participates in everything the Farm Progress Show brings.