South Dakota farmers grew big crops in 2014 and 2015. This year however, it looks like it won't be three in a row. We talked to a farmer in Southeast South Dakota about crop conditions and what's been a wild growing season.
It's a typical trip to the bean field this year for Jonathan Hagena and his son, Peter. It's a crop that's come a long way thanks to August rains.
"The beans have held on and these rains in August really have really helped out. I'm more optimistic on our bean yields than our corn yields," says Lincoln County, South Dakota farmer, Jonathan Hagena.
USDA is too.
The Department's September forecast for the South Dakota soybeans increased one bushel to 43 bushels per acre. The corn yields however fell from 147 to 142 bushels per acre for the state. That's something ProFarmer saw on its tour earlier in August.
"We were up there in South Dakota where they went through a crazy planting season followed up with some hot and dry conditions," says ProFarmer's Chip Flory.
Hagena says that crazy season forced some fields into prevent plant. He put some of those acres into oats.
"The economics just favored to stick with prevent plant corn rather than to change those fields into beans and plant them into beans the second week in June. Right now, I don't regret that decision," says Hagena.
He says once planted, the area dried out. His farm only received over two inches of rain in all of June and July.
"My best answer for how the corn is right now is variable," says Hagena.
That's why Hagena expects to be 20 to 30 bushels per acre below his average corn yield.
"We probably have some areas with well over 200 bushel per acre corn but I'm sure near those low spots and on lighter ground where we dried out; we probably have corn that's 100 bushels per acre or less," says Hagena.
Looking back at the growing season, he's pleased with the crop he has and the time he's spent with his son monitoring the potential in 2016.
Farmers in the county say the area received roughly three inches of rain last week. That will help move the crop along.