Blog Banner

Acres of Knowledge

All issues concerning Small Farms, Agriculture, Local Food Systems, and the Natural Resources.
LateSeasonPodFeeders
click image to view 3 more

Harvest Crop Conditions - September 28, 2018

Here in central Illinois, we have had over ten days of open, dry harvest weather. This has been great for farmers wanting to get their crops harvested. However, this is leading to overly dry crops, especially soybeans harvested at moistures less than 10 percent moisture. It is an unfortunate situation leading to yield reduction due to moisture shrink. Another issue popping up is "weak"...

Read More >

DroughtMonitor-20170912 IL
click image to view 3 more

Crops, Weather and Low Prices

2017 has provided this part of Illinois with another "interesting" growing season. According to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor map from the USDA and NOAA, a portion of central Illinois stretching from southern Champaign County through parts of DeWitt, Piatt, Logan, Sangamon, Cass and Morgan to the Illinois River is in a "Moderate Drought". This has led to a story of two different growing condi...

Read More >

ILL NetFarmIncome
click image to view 4 more

2017 Cash Rent Projections

It is the time of the year when farmers and farmland owners begin the process of renegotiating cash rent leases for the next growing season. In Illinois, about 75% of all farmland is owned by non-farming land owners, and nearly 2/3's of those acres are cash rented in some form. This results in approximately half of all Illinois farmland being cash rented. A lot of factors will ultimately deter...

Read More >

Ugly-LoRes

Wet, Cool Soils Tough on Crops

The month of May has given local farmers wet, soggy and cool soils with the result being fields with uneven stands of corn and soybeans. Cool, wet soils slow the germination and emergence of plants, which leads to increased seed rots, seedling blights, occurrences of insect damage, nutrient deficiency and herbicide injury. As I check fields, it is not uncommon for me to see corn plants...

Read More >

Cover Crops-C S-112216L
click image to view 3 more

What Late Cover Crops Can Do?

Since 2011, I have been planting cover crops and I have grown different types: spring oats and radish; cereal rye; and cereal rye with rapeseed. I like cereal rye and we grow 250+ bushel per acre corn after cereal rye. It can be done. Why do I like Cereal Rye? In an effort to keep my costs as low as possible, my cover crops are planted after corn and soybean harvest in October and depen...

Read More >

Armyworm-CornDamage
click image to view 2 more

Moths Are Flying, Farmers Beware

The 2017 Illinois Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey Program has started and cooperators are reporting high captures of Black Cutworm moths and True Armyworm moths in their pheromone traps. Recent articles in the Purdue University Pest & Crop Newsletter have high...

Read More >

Weed Height

Amaranth Has Defeated Two Herbicide Groups

If farming was baseball and Team Herbicides was at bat against the weed Team of Amaranths, then right now, there are two strikes against Herbicides. A new report from the University of Illinois Plant Clinic bears this out. This has weed scientists across the Midwest very concerned and it should have Illinois farmers and farmland owners concerned. In a U of I Bulletin post, the Plant Cli...

Read More >