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Farm

  • Harvest in high gear

    As farmers flipped the calendar to October last week, it must have seemed strange. Unlike last year, when they’d hardly gotten into the fields by Oct. 1, many county producers now have nearly 90 percent of their corn in the bin.
    Though there’s still some corn out there, it’s getting harder and harder to spot. And farmers have put a big dent in their soybean acres, as well.
    “The last four years have been strange,” said Ron Marshel, Fayette County Farm Bureau manager. “We don’t know what normal is anymore.”

  • Harvest continues

    Rains fell heaviest across the northern half of the state last week and slowed soybean harvest. But statewide, the corn harvest continued with little interruption.
    The unseasonably warm weather and breezy conditions helped dry fields out quickly after the rain showers moved through.
    Temperatures across the state were 7-9 degrees above normal for the week, and precipitation averaged .9 inch statewide, only slightly above normal.
    There were 5.1 days suitable for fieldwork last week.

  • FFA chapter busy in summer months

    The Vandalia FFA chapter has been active in many activities in recent months.
    Levi Ulmer, Jacob Rau, Bradley Jenner, Nate Elam and adviser Todd Ehlers attended the 82nd annual Illinois state FFA convention. At that event, the chapter was recognized with three awards:  the Silver Emblem Chapter award, the $1,000 FFA Foundation Sponsor award and the Century Challenge award.

  • Ready for Harvest

    Though some of the northern parts of the state received rain showers last week, Fayette County farmers were able to continue their harvest activities. Officials say that more than half of the corn has now been harvested, and many producers have started on soybeans. This year's harvest has gone much better than last year, when persistent rains delayed planting in the spring and hampered harvest activities in the fall.

  • Area farmers eligible for flooding loans

    Family farmers in 55 Illinois counties  – including Fayette – are now eligible to apply for low-interest emergency loans due to physical and production losses caused by excessive rain, flooding and flash flooding that occurred after April 1 this spring.
    In addition, with a qualifying loss, the designation makes producers eligible for the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Program (SURE).

  • Rural King's move to Orgill facility nearly triples size of former store

    When the Vandalia Rural King store moved to its new location, it was only a couple blocks away.
    But judging by the reaction from customers, the new store is in a different universe.
    "People really like the space, the openness of the store," said store manager John Beck. "There's also a lot more room in the parking lot."
    Now, with more than 100,000 square feet of retail space (compared to less than 40,000 square feet before), the store has expanded many of its existing lines and  added others.

  • Good weather, moisture launch harvest activities across Illinois

    Cooler conditions continued over much of the state last week.
    With small amounts of precipitation across the state, many farmers were able to take full advantage of the favorable weather.
    Many producers are either harvesting or preparing for harvest.
    Other farming activities include fall tillage and planting winter wheat.
    There were 5.8 days suitable for fieldwork last week.

  • It's Harvest Time

    Harvest activities started in a big way in Fayette County during the past week. In the first picture, Mitch Johnson drives the combine on the farm owned by his father, Mark Johnson, in the Augsburg area. Many area producers are meeting or exceeding the yields predicted by ag officials.

    To keep the harvest activities going, combine operators frequently unload harvested corn on the fly. In the second photo, Mitch Johnson augers corn into a grain cart being pulled by his grandfather, Tom Johnson.

  • Getting Ready for Survey
  • Farm Briefs

    Dry weather aids corn development

    Very little, if any, precipitation, was received last week across the state, which continued to speed the crops along in their development.

    Temperatures were more moderate last week, with the statewide average temperature being below normal for the first time since early July.

    There were 6.8 days suitable for fieldwork last week across the state, making it a good week to put up good quality hay.

    The corn crop advanced to 87 percent dented, compared to the five-year average of 61 percent.