Heavy Rains Hit Fields in Illinois

We haven’t done anything for the biggest part of a month now. We’ve been getting rain after rain after rain here. And it’s pouring right now. We started out the season great — everything was beautiful, and we were in the driver’s seat on the biggest crop ever until about a month ago. But the crop’s headed downhill fast. The bottoms are all flooded out, the tops are saturated with water. The beans aren’t growing because they’ve been standing in water since they were planted. And there’s nothing in the 10-day forecast that says the rain will let up.

We’ve been doing cattle work and hauling grain, clearing out bins — getting ready to put seed in bins. But we’ll definitely have to replant the bottoms whenever the river goes down — about 200-300 acres. They’re spread out and not big fields, so we’d have about two days of replanting.

Test Plots and Fertilizer Insights

Colt was down here the other day, and we took some tissue samples and sent them in. We also looked at a fertilizer test plot we did and got some pictures. There’s a big difference in the corn on those plots. Both corn that was precision fertilized and corn that wasn’t were in the same growth stage — V6. But where we put the precision fertilizer, the corn was up to Colt’s shoulders. Where we didn’t, it was only up to his thighs — and that’s at the exact same stage at V6. We put a couple strips in in half a dozen different fields and varieties to see how they reacted, and it’s a version of the same thing everywhere. Where the fertilizer was not placed directly under the row, there’s a huge growth difference.

So now we’re just sitting around hoping the beans hold on long enough for us to spray, and we’re getting an airplane lined up to fly on some more urea and possibly fly on some fungicide. We did get 800 acres of V6 fungicide put on before it started raining a couple weeks ago, so that helped a bit.

But right now I’m heading back to the shed. I’m smoking a beef brisket and grits today for the employees and we’re having a little cookout. There’s not much else to do, so we’re going to make the most of it.