Wednesday, September 26th, 2007
Local harvest looks good so far
By Nancy Allen
A farmer harvests soybeans in a field next to the Ohio bicentennial barn north o. . .
Recent yields of soybeans and corn have been better than expected, considering the drought-like conditions during the growing season.
"The first soybeans I saw came off last week and the first corn I saw was this week," said Mercer County OSU Extension Agent Todd Mangen this morning. "The guy I talked to said he was getting about 57 bushels per acre for his beans."
Not bad, considering the overall average for soybeans in the county is 45 bushels per acre, Mangen said.
Mangen said he has heard no reports on corn yields yet, noting that corn was harmed more by the dry weather than soybeans.
The percentage of moisture in the soybeans that have been harvested is lower than expected, considering some of the stalks are still somewhat green, he said. The moisture content should be around 13.5 to 14 percent at harvest.
"I've heard moisture levels at the low to mid 20s and one guy had 11 to 12 percent moisture ... some have reported down to 9 percent moisture," Mangen said. "You don't want the moisture to get too low because we know that the price is based on weight."
Mangen said in the next two to three weeks, most of the beans should be harvested, wheat should be planted and a good deal of the corn also should be off. That's when ag officials will have a better idea of just how the dry weather affected yields, he said.
"There will always be pockets of poor crops, but I've never seen a year where it's been so spotty," he said. "You could have a field get 2 inches of rain and drive a mile down the road and they got nothing."