After taking the last several weeks off from blogging since everyone got busy with harvesting, i’ts time to pound on the keyboard as we go into the fall. September’s cool weather begins the signal of finishing the summer season and bringing focus to the fall. Fall harvest has been good to corn growers for the most part. We’ve had some weather losses and interruptions but yields remain very good. In some cases, both dryland and irrigated yields have been well above average, and others, just average. Corn prices continue to weaken as we continue with harvest across the south, which is expected. Yet, they remain above $5.00 +. Overall, harvest across the south, including Georgia, has been slightly behind the 5 yr average but it is certainly moving forward.
I had a conversation this morning with Dr. Scott Monfort, UGA Peanut Agronomist, regarding this year’s peanut crop. His indication is that it is slightly behind schedule but overall the crop is good. As he travels around the state, he suggested to me that irrigated yields will be off in some areas but dryland yields will compensate for it and provide a good yield for Georgia growers. He noted disease pressure such as tomato spotted wilt virus, cool, wet conditions, and others, have contributed to a slightly lower yield expectation yet still good.
Dr. Camp Hand, UGA Cotton agronomist, in a conversation this morning, also stated that the cotton crop was slightly later due to poorer planting conditions in the spring and similar conditions experienced with peanuts. His “snap shot” of the crop was that his has very good yield potential but it remains to be seen. The dryland crop suffered from the hot, dry conditions of late May and June, but steady summer rains supported significant improvements as the crop progressed. All in all, a potential good crop with good prices is very encouraging for Georgia growers and the surrounding states. Let’s continue to pray for good weather and a good fall to finish up this summer’s work.
Hopefully, peanut digging and harvesting will bring about a great crop as well as cotton and also soybeans. Good pricing coupled with good yields will recharge the coffers because it will be needed as supplies for next year already appear short and and costs are rising.
I encourage everyone, growers, advisors, county agents, ag businessmen, suppliers, family members, bankers, etc …. all those involved in any farming or ranching operation to take a little time for yourself and your family. This has been a stressful year. Stress is indeed a killer. The world, the U.S., local communities, and families are under a tremendous amount of stress brought on by so much division, disagreements, debates, politics, and fear within many of our communities. Certainly, I won’t point to any one thing but we have all lived thru many of the causes. Stress has such a negative effect that we must take time to clear our minds, give thanks for our lives, families, abilities to grow a crop, to see the birth of new life; and know the good results of hard work, to feel the refreshing touch of cool weather, the smells of seasonal changes. Please take a little time out and THEN take a deep breath and relax. Everyday is filled with lots of blessings if we know what to look for in our surroundings. Yes, there are lots of challenges on the horizon but with every challenge comes an opportunity to have a positive impact on ourselves and those around us.