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Farmers take advantage of good weather

Farmers take advantage of good weather

One farmer described the 2018 harvest as ‘stop-and-start’

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

U.S. cash crop producers are making good use of favorable weather to continue with harvest.

Farmers have combined 76 percent of the national corn crop, the USDA’s latest Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin says. That number is up from 63 percent last week.

In Minnesota, harvest progress jumped to 78 percent as of the USDA’s Nov. 6 report. That figure is an increase of 20 percent from last week.

But it appears Mother Nature’s cooperation in the state was short lived, said Les Andersen, a corn grower from Cannon Falls, Minn. and vice-president of the Minnesota Corn Growers Association.

“Farmers were definitely able to make up some ground before it snowed over the weekend,” he told “Myself, I’ve probably got two or three days and about 150 acres left to harvest.”

Dry conditions leading up to harvest don’t appear to have impacted yields.

Andersen’s yield monitor has shown up to 210 bushels per acre, he said.

“I’m very happy with that (yield) considering we basically didn’t have any rain from the end of July to September,” he said. “Last year we were around 225 (bu/ac), but I can’t complain with this year’s results.”

Soybean producers also used the good conditions to combine more acres.

Nationally, farmers have harvested 83 percent of their soybean crop, the USDA’s report says. That number is up from 72 percent last week.

In South Dakota, soybean harvest progress increased by 15 percent from last week. Farmers have combined 92 percent of their crop.

Just when producers thought they were in for an extended stretch of good weather, however, Mother Nature took over, said Marc Reiner, a soybean producer from Trips, S.D.

“Early last week farmers were able to get out there and harvest some acres but, by the end of the week, moisture rolled back in,” he told “It’s been frustrating at times. This whole harvest season has been stop-and-start, so you never really get any momentum.”

Weather delays aside, soybean yield and quality are good, Reiner said.

“Everything stayed good on the quality side of harvest,” he said. “Yields have been good, but there’s also been some variability given the moisture in the fields.”

More. U.S. winter wheat is emerging.

About 70 percent of the winter wheat crop is up, the USDA says. That number is up from 63 percent last year.

In Nebraska, 93 percent of the winter wheat crop has emerged, which is the highest among the 18 documented states.

Only 16 percent of California’s winter wheat has emerged. That number is the lowest of the 18 states.


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