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Across the Editor's Desk: Let it rain

12/05/2012 @ 9:20am

“We're Ok, but Please let it rain Next year” — Illinois Farmer

Joining Successful Farming magazine this year was my best decision of the year. I have had many wishes of welcome from the staff, from the industry, and from readers and friends in the field. But what a year it was.

When I accepted the opportunity to join this staff – which allows me the privilege to speak with you every month – I didn't realize we were in the throes of the worst drought in decades. As they say, timing is everything.

The highs (grain prices) and lows (some crop yields) made for an unsettling season, to be sure. Even the same farmer's fields across a county road had vastly different outcomes. Successful Farming magazine editors covered the drought, trying to make sense of the weather, the markets, and their impact in each issue and on Agriculture.com.

“This season just doesn't make sense,” one farmer told me as I sat in his combine during harvest. Well said.

Looking back on 2012, we endured a drought, a national election (way too many TV commercials), and plenty of life's events in between. As we look to 2013, we can all agree – we'd like to see more rain.

“Successful Farming editors covered the drought, trying to make sense of the weather, the markets, and their impact in each issue and on Agriculture.com.”

The quote at the top of the page appeared in this magazine. Those words, however, weren't spoken this year. They came from an Illinois farmer in 1988, a year that had one of the worst droughts prior to this year. Another central Illinois farmer said then, “All these farmers want is to get this crop gone and to get on to 1989.”

In 1989, I started at Meredith Corporation (Successful Farming magazine's publisher), and 23 years later, I am now looking ahead and hoping for rain, as well.

Here's to a successful 2013.

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