(Posted Thu. Jul 24th, 2014)
The National Corn Growers Association now offers its fourth season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.
Today, Field Notes caught up with Iowa farmer April Hemmes, who farms in the north central part of the state.
“At our farm, we are sitting pretty good actually,” said Hemmes. “I went out scouting my fields yesterday, and almost all of the silks are brown. This means that they have been pollinated. Pollination looks to be even. So, I am pretty lucky that way.”
To listen to the full interview with Hemmes, including her account of a recent agricultural mission to China, click here.
Next, Maryland farmer Jennie Schmidt spoke with Field Notes about how her crop is faring.
“One of our last planted fields is now in its final stage of pollination,” said Schmidt. “We are starting to see some ears fill out with kernels now. We are looking at what will probably be about an average crop. While we have had generally good growing conditions, we have been just a bit on the dry side here.”
Schmidt also shared a recap of her recent blog posts on finding out that she was a corporation and corn sex. To listen to the full interview, click here.
Kentucky farmer Adam Bell, who also participated in the NCGA DuPont New Leader Program, reported on the crop condition on his farm.
“We are doing really well here in western Kentucky,” said Bell. “We’ve had adequate moisture up to this point. The crop is beginning to hurt a little bit because it is beginning to turn a little bit dry. But, with chances of rain this week, we should be in pretty good shape.”
To listen to the full interview with Bell, including a recap of his experiences in the New Leader Program, click here.
Finally, Field Notes checked in with Nebraska farmer and agronomist Andy Jobman.
“Right now, we are about half way through pollination, and we are about a week behind where we would be compared to average,” said Jobman. “In our area, things have really changed a lot in the past ten days. Two or three weeks before that, we had abnormally cool and cloudy weather. That really held back the crop’s progress in terms of how fast it could grow. This week, we have temperatures in the high 90s with high humidity, and it is just what the corn crop has needed.”
To find out more about how hail and irrigation have impacted the Nebraska crop, listen to the full interview by clicking here.
Stay tuned over the coming weeks as Field Notes follows the growers who have opened their farms, families and communities up this year and meet the true faces of modern American agriculture.