Lee County

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Larry Hummel of Dixon has been farming with his brother since 1975 in the corner of Lee, Ogle, and Whiteside counties. They raise corn, soybeans, and a little wheat.

My brother-in-law and I drove to Fargo, North Dakota to watch a friend of ours’ daughter (Reece Larramendy) wrestle in the Junior Nationals Wrestling Tournament and I did some 70-plus mph scouting on the way there. The corn in Wisconsin looked like the corn here in northern Illinois, pretty …

Most of the showers that have moved through the area are fairly spotty but there has been enough rolling by that most of the fields are sitting good on moisture for now. We are right in the middle of pollination and conditions are good, but I am keeping an eye on some hot spots of rootworm b…

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Larry Hummel, a FarmWeek CropWatcher from Lee County, provides an update on crop conditions and current markets. "We are close to perfect conditions around here. We could use some more warmth and sunshine … but this season has been pretty amazing for us for most of our fields," he shared on …

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Yellow soybeans and stunted corn, those are the buzz words for the week. I don't think we had that much rain but soybeans in some of the low-lying areas are turning yellow and are stunted. There are green strips that extend into the yellow areas that line up with the planter tractor tire tra…

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This is my favorite time of year. There isn't much that has to be done today. Most of the work that needs to be done can wait until tomorrow and there is so much fun stuff to squeeze into the day. There are fairs, festivals, music events, kayaking, swimming and so much more, but the thing I …

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Cool weather and rain is the big story of the week. Anywhere from seven-tenths to 2 inches of rain with temperatures in the 70s and 80s has really changed the looks of both corn and soybeans. With more of the same in the 15-day forecast, things are looking up for this year’s crops. Corn is s…

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To be honest, I don't know what to think about this year's corn crop. We had a perfect start with emergence. Things were looking fantastic and then the cold weather hit, and things spiraled downward. Some plants seemed to handle it just fine and others were stunted and fell behind making for…

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Last week's cold snap really dinged the corn here in Lee County. Between burn spots and rolled up leaves the plants looked really rough for about four days. Now, the warm weather has them coming around. Soybeans didn't seem to miss a beat and of course it didn't look like the weeds were slow…

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My how the times have changed. I believe it was three weeks ago in my report to FarmWeek I stated that I was putting my winter coat away for the season. The forecast for Friday (May 28) is calling for lows in the 30s but true to my statement I will not pull my winter coat back out. I might h…

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Things are looking good here in northern Illinois. Temperatures are well into the 70s and we are getting some nice showers to get this year’s crop off and running. We are all caught up on spraying for now but showers have been close enough together that we will need to stay on top of the spr…

All the cold weather has turned the corn to more of a yellow color than green. A wise man once told me not to worry, “It was yellow corn when you planted it, and it will be yellow corn come harvest.” This week’s weather forecast is calling for a nice warmup, so that will put the green back i…

They call it a lot of things - planning ahead, frugal, tight, a collector or maybe just a plain, old hoarder. But that cubbyhole we have been throwing old bushings in for the last umpteen years finally paid off. A late night repair to the planter would have had to wait till morning if not fo…

Some area farmers didn't let the snow slow them down and planted right through it. We waited to start, but are going full steam ahead now. The forecast is calling for some warm weather this week, so we want to get as much seed in the ground as possible to take advantage of it. How about thos…

A lot of activity last week, although none of it in the field. We have been busy in the shop and have got a few brush piles burnt from the trees we trimmed last winter. Soils are starting to dry up, but the process is real slow with temperatures down into the 30s overnight.

Wow! This week went by fast. Feels like I just got done emailing last week's report. Great conditions for getting in some fieldwork  until Wednesday’s rain put an end to it. We came up a little short on getting all our spring-applied nitrogen down, so it won't be long and we can start planti…

Here we go again!  Another season, another chance to reach for higher yields and higher prices. Not much action out in the fields here, but if the rains stay away, this week will be the complete opposite. Soils are getting close to being fit for a little tillage. I pray you had a meaningful …