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A gamut of yields in the eastern Corn Belt
Jim Kreider, a retired Lancaster, Pennsylvania farmer, says the corn in his area is below average. Soybean pods are lacking beans. It was too wet this year, he says. Yields are below the area's 50 bu./acre avg. Corn normally makes 150 bushels, but below that this year. Kreider serves as a hay broker, in his retirement years.
It is surprising, but central Ohio farmers are seeing their yield monitors read 200 bushels per acre this year. With late-planted crops, little rain during the growing season, Ohio farmers like Justin Barnes, south Columbus, never thought they would see this good of corn go into their combine this year.
Marc and Josh Haring, brothers that farm together near Lexington, Ohio, practice mostly no-till soil management methods on nearly 800 acres. The Harings have over 360 corn acres left to harvest and 160 acres of soybeans.
I caught up with Marc Haring, also a Marketing Talk member, during a rainy day in north-central Ohio. In the buckeye state, only 51% of the soybeans have been harvested vs. 96% a year ago, USDA reported Monday. Ohio's corn harvest is just 18% complete vs. 89% a year ago.
Because water and bean harvesting don't go together, the Harings' bean heads sit idle. "If it doesn't rain anymore in the next few days, we can finish our harvest," Josh Haring says.
In Richland County, Ohio, bridge size can't keep up with today's larger farm equipment. "Bridges county-wide are too small and forcing farmers to drive four miles to go around the smaller passes. Plus, this bridge has a 6-ton weight limit and our combine weighs 10 tons, " Marc Haring says.
Another challenge for Ohio's farmers, in 2011, is the spreading of marestail. Ohio farmers are able to use 2 4-D to kill the weed in early springtime. "Because you have to wait seven days to plant, this is a tough weed to control," Marc Haring says.
On Monday, the thunder rolled across the eastern Corn Belt areas of Ohio. The delayed harvest of corn and soybeans is causing farmers to file prevent planting claims on this year's soft red winter wheat. OH winter wheat is only 67% planted vs. 91% average, USDA says.