While central Illinois farmer Joel Reedy has most of his corn and some of his soybean crops planted, recent cool temperatures and heavy rains have taken a toll on getting both to flourish aboveground.
“The corn emergence around here, it’s probably some of the worst I’ve seen in the last couple of years,” said Reedy during a planting break ahead of the latest weather front that dumped more rain on Moultrie and other Illinois counties. “The corn has got a real dull, pale color to it. I’d like to improve that. Those early soybeans are up, but they definitely can be evened up.”
Like many other Illinois farmers, Reedy and his father, Michael, who farm near the Lovington-Dalton City area, got a fast start last month, only to be sidelined in early to mid-May. In an area where cash rents average about $325 to $330 an acre, he’s hoping for sunnier and warmer weather to improve planted crops and finish planting.
“The soybean yields have been good, maybe right now we’re ahead with soybeans,” said Reedy, who has a 50-50 corn-soybean rotation and about 80 percent of soybean acres yet to plant. “The (corn) prices are down there around $3 for fall. Through this area, it’s pretty high cash rent. It’s penciling pretty tight.”
Reedy said he’s worn sweatshirts or jackets more this spring than in past years because of the cool weather. After waiting a couple of weeks for soils to dry, he resumed corn planting last week before the latest weather front moved through.
“I thought the conditions were really good, probably the best compared to the last two years maybe,” he said. “We will have to replant, probably on both crops. Hopefully, that’s going to be at the 5% to 10% level.”
Reedy hopes the latest soaking might put a little enthusiasm into grain and oilseed markets, which he calls his greatest challenge.
“I still have a little old crop (corn) in the bins, but it was sold a year ago and it just has to be delivered to Decatur,” said Reedy. “That’s going to have a good price. That kind of makes a guy put a smile on.”