In this Harvest Report, Case IH Combine Product Specialist Corwyn Lepp is our guest blogger. He tells us about conditions in his territory of South Dakota, western Iowa and western Minnesota. We’re anxious to hear about harvest progress in your part of the country. Were your yields better – or worse – than you expected.
It was an early harvest in my area also, as you’ve read in reports from the other specialists. Harvest got started about the week of Sept. 10, and by about Oct. 6, the majority was done. This last week has pretty much put the finishing touches on harvest.
I’ve seen a lot of yield diversity this year. In areas like southeast South Dakota, the drought took its toll with yields as low as 5 to 10 bu., and it did not matter if it was corn or soybeans. Western Iowa was a mix of yields – it just depended on whether or not you caught a cell of rain. Western Minnesota was better as far as yields were concerned. I did see a few fields in Minnesota reach 200 bu./acre for corn and 60 bu./acre for soybeans. Some farmers in western Iowa reported better-than-expected yields while others said yields were worse than expected – it was just very spotty. Southern South Dakota was hit pretty hard with drought, but from I-90 to the north, crops were actually better. I saw a greater degree of variation in South Dakota than in Minnesota.
Farmers are concerned about subsoil moisture. In fact, where I live in southeastern South Dakota, a number of farmers aren’t going to do any fall tillage until they get some rain.
One odd thing I saw in soybeans in South Dakota and parts of western Iowa was rubber pods. The overall soybean moisture level was very dry (actually down in the 8 percent level). However, there were a number of green pods that were hard to thresh out. Some of the other-color combines had a hard time threshing and separating these green soybean pods. One of the little tricks that we used was to put a small wire concave in the front section of the concave area (one small wire in the front section for midrange Case IH Axial-Flow® combines, or with our flagship combine, we would put a small wire concave in the No. 1 right position). Since Axial-Flow combines are pretty easy to adapt for extreme crop conditions, this really helped thresh those green pods and save kernels. The grain sample and quality were noticeably different over the competition!
Editor’s Note: Corwyn Lepp, Case IH Combine Product Specialist, has worked for Case IH for 28 years. In his spare time, Corwyn provides harvesting tips, setting advice and some homegrown videos on CaseIHHarvesting.com. He works with dealers and customers in South Dakota, western Iowa and western Minnesota, where the primary crops are corn and soybeans.