Farmers: crops need rain

Published: May. 31, 2023 at 4:00 AM CDT
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ADAMS COUNTY, Ill. (WGEM) - Some local farmers say they desperately need rain.

While some have picked up some isolated showers in recent weeks, others have not gotten any, and they said the weeks of heat and no rain continues to take a toll on their crops.

Adams County Farm Bureau president Brent Clair said his crops in northern part of Adams County are in the danger zone. He said the unseasonably warm, dry conditions have started to kill some of his corn and kept his soybeans from sprouting.

He said they need rain and soon.

“If it doesn’t come in the next five to ten days, we’re going to see yields drop significantly,” Clair said. “Right now the national average is 181 bushels per acre. If we don’t see some significant rains across large parts of the corn belt, that’s going to drop off drastically.

He said a mild winter and dry spring have left crops reaching deeper and deeper into the soil to find moisture.

Liberty farmer Ryan Meyer said there is a little subsoil moisture left but more hot forecasts and no humidity mean it will go away quick. He said his crops aren’t in danger just yet but they will be if it stays dry for another week or so.

He said they’re looking for several inches of rain to get them back on track.

“Ideally we would get a half inch, three quarters of an inch to kind of soften up the ground and then if we could put in our order, we’d like about an inch a week,” Meyer said.

Corn and soybeans aren’t the only crops to watch out for. Meyer said without any rain, the hay ground they’ve already cut and bailed will stay dormant and won’t have any regrowth.

He said that could really affect their yields.

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