A Decent Year But Not A Home Run

Published On: October 21, 2011

As the first frost of fall appears in the Brandenburg fields, Trent looks back on a season which dealt some adversity, but ended with about average yields overall. Trent has completed his own fall harvest and tillage, but is still doing some custom work for other operators. The fall tillage has been made easier by some little rains “that should have come three months ago” Trent observed.

The serious drought in this area has caused the level of Lake Decatur to fall 2.5 feet since July; the City of Decatur has prohibited car washing and watering lawns, among other things. Trent hopes that his completed fall tillage will aid in capturing rainfall to recharge his ground-water supply.

Trent’s yields were highly variable because of the very wet June being followed by months of drought. Crops in the low areas were damaged early by waterlogged soil. The conventional wisdom is that crops on the higher ground would be damaged by the drought but plants in the low areas would do better. Trent discovered that the early-season root damage kept the low-ground plantings from developing good root systems, so those plants were doubly-damaged by wet and drought, while the best yields came from plants on the high ground. These high-ground yields were in line with the high yields of recent years.

Trent is making crop insurance claims on the low-yielding acreages. The insurance payments will raise the net financial return on the land, “but I’d rather have high yields,” Trent concluded.

More from The Field Report

A Good Season For Trent Despite The Drought

October 31, 2023|

Trent Brandenburg is happy with his farming results this season. He still has about 20 acres of corn and another 20 of beans to harvest. Despite the drought earlier in the season, it is now too wet to get into [...]

Harvest Is Looking Good

October 6, 2023|

Rain at the end of September called a pause in Trent Brandenburg's harvest, giving him time to chat. Trent is about 25% done with his corn and soybean harvest. At first, his corn harvest moisture content was in the mid-20s, [...]

August: Crop Tours and Farm Shows

September 1, 2023|

August in the farming community is the month for crop tours and farm shows. Trent Brandenburg believes his corn and soybean yields will exceed the numbers posted for recent crop tours. Various ag firms host crop tours during August in [...]