Wrapping up Harvest in Illinois

I’m doing in-line ripping today. We got done with harvest a week ago this morning, and all in all it went very well. Personally, I was still slightly disappointed, but that’s just how I am. I was told to be very happy with what I have, because my corn was probably 30 bushels better than all my neighbors, and my beans were probably about eight. So overall, I’m pleased with the results.

The bean crop was better this year than our corn. The water was just too much for some of the corn to handle. We had a bunch of 195-bushel corn, but we also had fields that were waterlogged and drowned out with ugly sub-100 bushel corn. It seems like it’s a lot easier to bring an average down than bring it up.

Analyzing the Crop

The beans were probably the best farm average we’ve ever had. We had some precision fertilizer placement trial stuff, and we saw a big difference on the corn — 20- to 30-bushels where we applied the fertilizer. We also had a precision fertilizer placement trial in some beans with the strip till. We picked up a pretty solid five bushels by just putting fertilizer in different spots.

Our fungicide program was also big this year. We flew on some urea at tassle on corn, and with the combination of fungicide and urea, we picked up a solid 20 to 30 bushels. All these things are providing insights for the coming season, and we now have a solid backup plan if we have another wet, saturated year.

Looking Ahead

Hopefully we’ll wrap up our tillage operations in the spring, but we’ll have fall strip till done by Thursday, as well as all our major operations for fall. Then I have some custom ag work lined up, doing custom strip till and putting on anhydrous and phosphate with a strip till bar. People are really noticing what I’m doing with the strip till and fertilizer placement. So I’ve got that going and I’m hoping to develop it a little bit because I really think I could help some people out.

Other than that, I’ve got some friends who have a custom manure business, and when they get done in the spring, they help me farm, and when I get done farming in the fall, I go help them. Just more ways to stay busy and pick up some extra cash on the side.