2009 is just around the corner and farmers are penciling out their crop rotations, fertilizer plans and input costs, according to reports from AgWeb's Crop Comments.
Keeping the Mix
Many farmers report they are keeping similar crop rotations for 2009. "We have our seed purchased for 2009,” says a farmer from Miami/Fulton counties, north-central Indiana. "We plan on the time tested 50/50 corn/soybean rotation.”
A farmer from Lancaster County, Neb. is planning on a similar crop mix. "I would say a 50/50 rotation between corn and beans next year,” the farmer reports. "In this area maybe some switch to beans will depend on prices for crops and inputs come spring. There's not much corn on corn planted in this area.”
No corn will be found on a northeast North Dakota farmer's operation either. "Crop mix for 2009 will be about the same, with 50% in wheat and barley, 25% in oil seeds (canola and sunflowers) and 25% legumes (peas and dry beans), maybe a little flax, but NO corn,” the farmer reports.
Other farmers hope to keep their options somewhat open. "I have purchased my corn seed with the condition that I can change to soybeans or cotton with a credit of the same amount of money,” says a Lawrence County, Ala. farmer. "I hope this economy gets better soon and prices offer us a chance to make some money.”
The Great Fertilizer Debate
High fertilizer prices and late harvests made several farmers reanalyze their fertilizer applications.
"Very little fertilizer applied in this area thus far,” reports a Tippecanoe County, Ind. farmer.
Only one field in the operation was fertilized according to a report from a Shelby County, Ill. farmer. "We are waiting for the price to go down to spread the rest or just skip a year.”
Skipping a year may also be scheduled for a farmer from Bremer County, Iowa. "I have my P and K and NH3 still locked in from spring of 2008. It was a risk back then, but so far I am still cheaper than the current prices. Plan to fertilize corn on corn, and maybe skip corn-on-soy acres.”
While some farmers already know their exact crop mix, others are still weighing their options. "I have not purchased any seed or fertilizer for 2009. I hope to be hit with the inspiration soon!” says a Lamb County, Texas farmer.