Harvest time arrives after drought-stricken growing season

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BOONE COUNTY, Iowa — Combines have been rolling across Iowa fields this week. Rains on Monday did not land everywhere in the state, so combines were at work near Luther. While this summer’s drought has many concerned about the yield this year, some say it’s too early to determine what it will be.

“It’s hard to get a really good idea, especially because we are so on the early end,” said Meaghan Anderson, an Iowa State University Extension crop specialist for central Iowa. “Some of the earliest harvesting crops are the first maturing and likely ones that would’ve escaped some more stress that we saw.”

The hot, windy September weather with temperatures 80-90 degrees has helped to dry Iowa’s crops.

“I think it’s most certainly obvious that with the change in genetics of both corn and soy beans, we’re able to tolerate some hotter weather, dryer conditions,” said Kempton Young, site manager for Heartland Co-op in Luther. “I think harvest is progressing quite rapidly. We’ve been missing some of the big rain opportunities.”

“Probably won’t be the best yields, the greatest yields we ever had,” said Young. “I think it will be surprising to farmers with the conditions that we’ve had over the last two to three months.”

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