Over the past couple of weeks, the various crop tours have traveled the Corn Belt and have made their yield estimates. Looking ahead those projected yields would certainly be welcomed, but they are only going to attainable if Mother Nature is willing to extend the growing season, as crop development is roughly a month behind on average. A later than average frost, which is the long-term trend would certainly help improve yields and reduce grain drying costs.
At our forage program last week, a now retired OSU county agent mentioned that he had a client that many years ago had some 40-40-40 late planted corn; 40 bushel per acre, 40% moisture, with a 40-pound test weight. I certainly don’t think that will be the case this year, however an early frost at this point would only add to the challenges that 2019 has brought. That said, I would suggest that growers take some time, if you haven’t already to investigate propane costs for this fall if you suspect grain moisture will be a factor during harvest.
A sign of the coming change of seasons is that many of our garden crops are starting to slow down and some of the late season crops are nearing maturity. Winter squash must be thoroughly mature for best eating and storage quality. You may harvest squash for immediate use as soon as they have reached their right color for the maturity. If you wish to store for use during the winter months, wait until the shell is hard enough that it cannot be easily punctured with your thumbnail. Cool weather will increase the sugar content and improve the flavor. Harvest as soon as a light frost has killed the vines. Leave the harvested squash on the ground to cure for 10 to 14 days in the sun and cover if frost is a possibility. The squash may be stored for three to six months at 55-65 degrees and 40-70 percent humidity.
With September a few short days away don’t forget that we have Farm Science Review tickets for sale here in the office for $7. The dates for the show are September 17 through the 19th.
Also, on the 19th there will be a “Weathering the Storm” program in Fulton County. The goal of this program is to address how to manage some of the challenges associated with the growing year 2019.
This weekend is also Labor Day, a day set aside to honor all of the working people across the country and one of my favorite weekends as I have the opportunity to return home to the Morgan County Fair. Nothing beats spending the long weekend catching up with friends and family while showcasing agriculture. This is also the first week of Buckeye football. While I have sold my tickets for this weekend’s match up, you can bet I will have the radio on come game time. I’ll end this week with a quote from Vince Lombardi: “If you aren’t fired with enthusiasm, you will be fired with enthusiasm.” Have a great week. Go Bucks!
Sept. 2 – Labor Day, Office Closed
Sept. 17/19 – Farm Science Review