Although it has been a difficult year for many, the network of NAICC has kept me sane, and it is a reminder that we are all in this together, and with each other’s help, we will get through this. 2019 will long be remembered by many as the most challenging year in a consultant’s and researcher’s career. Below you will find an update from each of the NAICC members who gave mid-year crop reports.-- Matt Eich
Dan Moser, Centrol Inc
Most of the Barley came off without a glitch. Yield was great in the 80-110 bushel range, so we will still have beer!
Although the spring wheat yields have been good, the harvest has been extremely difficult. Just when things are fit, another inch of rain falls and set us back. On top of the harvest troubles, quality issues with low falling numbers from sprouted wheat in the head has been the biggest issue confronting the spring wheat in 2019.
The next crop to come off in our area is dry beans. Although I don’t have any harvested yet, the crop is very nice (guessing 1,800 to 3,200 #/A). Soybeans are starting to turn and combines will be rolling on them in two weeks. With the corn behind in maturity, if we freeze before September 20, it will be a disaster. 40/40/40 corn (40 moisture, 40 #'s and probably 40 bushels) The average frost date for most of my area is September 20th so a late frost is needed. Last year we did not freeze until the 13th of October, so I am praying every night that Mother Nature will be nice to us and bless us with a late October freeze this year.
Debra Keenan, Research 2000
The 2019 season was a challenge in California. Due to the fires last year in the Northern part of the state, the crops received limited photosynthesis all season. In almonds, this resulted in not having a good nut set for this season because of the lack of photosynthetic energy from last year. The main variety of Nonpareil was off in yields; in some areas up to 30 %. The pollinators are a looking a bit better. The yields are down in general and the insect damage is higher than normal due to the lighter crop. The walnut crop is looking like it is close to average or slightly below. The Table Olive industry is facing some geopolitical events. There have only been two major canners in play since the early 1900s; one of the canners is making a move to imports only and they are dropping their domestic growers. This canner will not be purchasing domestic olives, so that industry is in turmoil. The prune crop is average, however they are not sizing and the “C and D” sizes are not being accepted, so a lot of that crop is not being harvested. The rice crop looks good, the only issue there was at planting, the spring rains either delayed it or it did not get planted.
Matt Winslow, Tidewater Agronomics
Cotton, Corn, Peanuts, and full season Soybeans were all planted from early April through mid-May under ideal moisture conditions. A prolonged hot and dry spell impacted corn yields for the earliest planted corn in our area. Corn yields are ranging from 150 to 225 bushels per acre with areas that are hitting 250+. The soy, cotton, and peanut crop look to be very good provided we don’t receive another event like Hurricane Dorian later in the season. We were very blessed to come through that storm with minimal impact. The full swing of cotton, peanut, and soybean harvest will begin in 2 weeks.
Harold Lambert, Lambert Agricultural Consulting, Inc.
Corn: all dry land yielded 150-210 bu/a, off 20-50 bu due to cold wet April, then brief drought in May. Southern rust showed up too late to be a factor. Stinkbugs were heavy in spots.
Soybeans: tremendous acreage lost to flooding from the Mississippi River and later, to flooding from Tropical Storm Barry. Early yields were 45-70 bu/a, and later varieties are still in the field with more harvest aid applications made daily. Heavy stinkbug season, lepidoptera very manageable.
Sugarcane: with a cool spring, crop has been 3-4 weeks behind, now is catching up. Planting season is nearly complete. Harvest of an average to slightly better crop starts next week.
Cotton: ironically, it’s been fairly good weather for cotton. Insects overall are less than normal, which means tarnished plantbugs and bollworms (on dual gene varieties) were successfully dealt with.
Growers and consultants: tired.
Amy Beth Dowdy, ABD Crop Consulting
Rice in my area has had some good yields & some poor yields. Rice planted behind rice in not the best of conditions has suffered the consequences of last year’s wet harvest & poor weed control, thus the lower yields. Rice behind soybeans has done better but yields are still down due to rain during pollination.
Soybeans that were planted on preventive planted (PP) acres look good in our area but yields have yet to be determined. A good slow rain would help to ensure some adequate yields to offset losing the rice acres.
Not all the PP acres were planted in the area that should have been planted to soybeans. This was because the rains continued into late July.
One bright spot is non-irrigated corn is yielding well due to all the rainfall.
James Todd, Todd Ag Consulting
I don't want another 2019!
2019 will be remembered as the year of extremes. With cool wet weather during planting, approximately 70% of my cotton acres were lost and had to be replanted to another crop.Farmers acted quickly and were able to replant to corn. The corn got off to a great start with ample soil moisture. Then July hit and the rains stopped and 100+ degree temperatures set in. In many cases, farmers were unable to keep up with moisture demands with irrigation for late planted corn, and fields suffered drastically. In some instances, portions of fields had to be abandoned to salvage some type of yield. Dryland corn burned up before it tasseled and very few fields of dryland corn will be harvested due to severe drought. The cotton that remains is an average crop at best but was able to make up some ground in maturity with the high temperatures.