Strasburg County Financial Agent Garett Moffett and his crew set up a green tent across the road from the elevator in Strasburg Village Park recently.
Though the day was cold and windy, several farmers came by to pick up lunch. There were barbecue sandwiches by Papa’s Smoked Meat as well as chips, water, cookies. Also supplied was general information on crop insurance.
“We just want to let the farmers know we appreciate what they do since it was a trying year with the weather,” Moffett said.
Dave Huffmaster of Stewardson said that so far the harvest season has been very slow. He noted that he was done harvesting beans and just started harvesting corn.
“We’re having a very slow finish since the rain came this past weekend,” Huffmaster said. “We’ve had wet fields and wet corn since then.”
Eric Luce of Windsor said that his soybean harvesting is done but he only has two-thirds of his corn harvested. Like most farmers his thoughts on the season include the fact that there was too much rain.
Mike Dunaway of Cowden raises corn, beans, cattle, hogs and rabbits. He said harvest was not done for him yet, but the beans were so far good and the corn was fair. He appreciated the meal for farmers.
Illinois State Climatologist Trent Ford provided some statistics on the growing season.
“The first six months of this year was the fifth wettest January to June on record at 32 inches, which is 12 inches above normal,” he said of Effingham County. “The crucial planting period from March to May was the ninth wettest on record at 18.29 inches, which is 7 inches above normal.”
Ford looked farther back at the nine-month period between October 2018 and June 2019 and found that it was the third wettest on record, at 41.05 inches, which is 14 inches above normal. The 12-month period between July 2018 and June 2019 was the wettest on record at 58.38 inches, which is 19 inches above normal for Effingham County.
Meanwhile, last month was the 16th driest September on record for the county, with 1.09 inches of precipitation, which is 2 inches below normal. Ford has gotten mixed reports on the impact from the dryness and combined heat in August and September.
“Some have said that it has helped mature late-planted crops,” Ford said. “Others report expectations of significant yield loss because of it.”