Members of FarmWeekNow’s CropWatcher 2.0 team have their combines waiting at the starting line.
At least one farmer started last week, while three others said they will begin harvest this week or next.
“Everyone is eager to get started so we have an idea what our yield is going to be at the end,” CropWatcher 2.0 Lucas Roney said.
Across the state, 62% of the corn crop and 61% of the soybean crop was rated good to excellent at the beginning of the week, according to USDA’s latest crop progress report. Corn harvest was 4% complete across the country; just 1% of Illinois corn has been harvested as of Sept. 13.
Roney, a Moultrie County farmer, said he might take some end rows off his cornfield this week, but harvest will really ramp up over the next few weeks.
“Soybeans are maturing faster than I thought,” he shared Monday. “Many fields have changed significantly over the weekend and are all yellow now.”
Some farmers are taking advantage of the strong basis and drying discounts by harvesting wet corn and taking it to the local processing plant in Decatur, Roney noted.
He anticipates a busy harvest season with potentially big yields on his corn and soybeans.
In White County, CropWatcher 2.0 Bryce Williams said everything is drying down nicely. When will harvest start for the White County Farmer?
“I plan to start today,” he reported Tuesday morning. The busy season is just beginning for Williams and he hopes for a good crop harvest and safe fall season.
In McHenry County, CropWatcher 2.0 John Bartman’s beans are turning yellow and corn ears are dropping.
“Our biggest problem this year has been herbicides,” he said outside of his bean field. “Marestil is the real culprit this year.”
Walking through his corn field, Bartman noticed some disease pressure.
“It’s not bad for the end of the year,” he said. “Very seldom do you see a field that’s perfect”
Bartman took some corn in for testing over the weekend and it came back at 25% moisture. He plans to begin harvest when it’s 21% to 22%.
WATCH: Join John Bartman as he scouts his grain sorghum, corn and soybean fields in McHenry County.
In McDonough County, CropWatcher 2.0 Colby Hunt’s combines raced to the field Sept. 9.
"It's a little bit drier actually than we expected, which is helping us to keep rolling," he reported of his corn crop, which is averaging 25% moisture. "One of the reasons we started a little bit sooner than we thought we would is the local ethanol plant had a pretty good basis opportunity to get some corn in last week."
He expects to begin soybean harvest next week.