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Farm

  • Farm Heritage Days

    The American Farm Heritage Museum in Greenville held its annual Farm Heritage Days last Friday, Saturday and Sunday. In the first photo, Mike Myers of Altamont drives his 1948 International M during a tractor pull on Saturday afternoon. In the second photo is a variety of Allis Chalmers tractors; Allis Chalmers was the featured tractor at this year's event.

  • Feeling the heat

    The longer the heat wave lingers over the Midwest, the more concerned area farmers become. And if the unusual weather pattern hasn’t already hurt yields, experts say that it won’t be long until it does.
    “It’s been a long time since we’ve had a prolonged heat wave like this,” said Ron Marshel, manager of the Fayette County Farm Bureau. “And even though we’ve gotten enough moisture to keep the plants going, the heat has taken a toll.”

  • July crop report

    ILLINOIS CROPS
    WHEAT: The Illinois wheat yield for the 2011 crop is estimated to average 61 bushels per acre, based on the July 1 surveys, down one bushel per acre from the June forecast. Total production would be 43.9 million bushels, more than 2.5 times the 2010 production of 16.5 million bushels.
    Acreage expected to be harvested for grain is 720,000, more than double the harvested acres in 2010. As of July 3, 75 percent of the wheat acres were harvested, compared to 82 percent last year and the five-year average of 70 percent.

  • Heat, lack of rain are affecting crops

    Statewide temperatures were 2.2 degrees above normal last week, averaging 78.4 degrees.
    Precipitation averaged 0.51 inches, 0.19 inches below normal. The far southern districts of the state received more than  1 inch of rain. Northern areas, however, were again below average in rainfall. Topsoil moisture was rated 9 percent very short, 29 percent short, 54 percent adequate and 8 percent surplus.
    Hot and dry crops were beginning to show stress.

  • Corn acres higher than expected; prices may fall

    With the release of USDA’s June Grain Stocks and Acreage reports comes a fundamental shift in the corn market, suggesting that corn prices will come under considerable pressure, according to University of Illinois agricultural economist Darrel Good.

  • Farm Briefs

    USDA reinstates farm labor survey
    In July, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will resume its Agricultural Labor Survey after the U.S. Department of Labor agreed to pay its costs. NASS suspended the survey in April due to budget constraints.

  • Smooth as Silk

    Most area corn plants – like this one in a field southwest of Vandalia – have moved into the silking stage.

    Hot weather has produced significant growth in recent days, but some plants are beginning to show signs of stress as dry conditions persist.

  • Illinois crop yield survey data to be collected soon

    Enumerators representing the Illinois Field Office of USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service will soon begin collecting data that will be used to estimate the corn and soybean yields that Illinois farmers will harvest this year.

  • USDA invites signup for value-added farm grants

    Illinois USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Callahan announced that applications are being accepted for grants to provide financial assistance to independent producers, farmer and rancher cooperatives, majority-controlled producer-based business ventures and agricultural producer groups through the Value-Added Producer Grant Program.

  • Corn Growth Affected By Rains

    Many area corn fields resemble rolling waves as the plants' height varies from 18 inches to 6 feet – depending on where the crops are in the field.

    Standing water in low-lying fields has stunted plants, or, in some cases, killed them. Conversely, corn in well-drained fields is entering the silking phase.