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Community Manager
marketeye
Posts: 3,218
Registered: ‎05-03-2010
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MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

[ Edited ]

Here's a couple photos of what things look like on the tour in central Indiana. Ouch. Here's a little more from the early stops on the tour this morning. 

 

2012-07-24_09-29-27_165_2.jpg

 

2012-07-24_09-32-13_134_2.jpg

 

Day 2: Indianapolis, IN to Bloomington, IL

At 5:25am:

Before I get into the crop tour stuff, I notice the farm markets are down hard, overnight. Europe's debt crisis and a wetter forecast seem to be putting the markets in a corrective mode. Meanwhile, Citigroup announced Tuesday that it will up its 3-month price forecast to $18.75 from $16.50. Now, let's get into the crop tour thoughts.

 

Crop Tour Thoughts:

The cropscouts on this tour have been through the northern part of Ohio and the eastcentral counties in Indiana. Today, we start in Indianapolis work our way to Bloomington, IL. Now, I know we are out here a little early, trying to figure out this year's crop. Considering that the grain on the ears of corn are still filling, and the soybean plants are either just finishing up flowering or putting on pods, there's no doubt there is still time left for the crops to finish. But, one thing we can gauge is the health of these crops.

There are a few things that stick out for me. One happened at a gas station in a small town in Indiana. A local (not a farmer), sitting in the station drinking coffee, told me the area's sweetcorn this year was bad. He then grabs the latest edition of the local paper and says, "This tells it all right here." The paper's headline read: Not So Sweet. Under the headline ran a big photo of an ear of sweetcorn that had very few kernels and appeared very short.

 

The other two things that stick out about this crop are the height and vibrancy (lack of it). Looking at this crop, reminds me a lot of a boxer with buckling knees. Let me illustrate my point and then I'll get back to cropscouting.

Man above corn.jpg

Another reporter on this tour noticed this first. But, when you can see people towering over corn in the Midwest, in July, I don't think that is good.

 

Man above beans.jpg

Although we have seen some soybean plants that were as tall as hip-high, this is the norm. Size doesn't always matter in July, for beans. But, we are just seeing way too short of crops. And it's not shown in this photo. But, man are there a lot of weedy fields this year. A lot of fields that even look like the farmer just threw his/her hands up and let them go. I wouldn't be concerned about these short crops, if it wasn't so dry. But, their chances of growing taller and putting on pods are dwindling with the lack of moisture.

 

What could have been.jpg

 

 

And this is my favorite photo, so far. I call this the "What could have been" photo. This ear of corn just looks like it would have had a normal life if it could have had moisture. The ear looked like it was doing all of the right things but growing.

 

We have a few traders, brokerage firm-types and a few meteorologists on the tour. The weather guys don't see much measurable rain coming, the traders talk about how the avg. yield number needs to be lowered. And I'm just a farmboy at heart. I feel worse and worse for the farmer, after coming out of these corn and soybean fields. This is definitely a year to remember. In fields that look like they will do over 100 bu./acre, I find myself saying "I bet a lot of farmers would take this field this year." And that is not saying much. See slideshow of Ohio crops.

 

So, onward and upward my friends.

 

Mike

Veteran Advisor
Mizzou_Tiger
Posts: 2,337
Registered: ‎11-02-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Swing into Missouri marketeye.......lots of talk about other states and their issues, and rightfully so.......however the number don't lie......basically 80 percent of missouri corn in P/VP......70 of the soya.....

Not sure the markets fully comprehend the magnitude of this issue....
Community Manager
marketeye
Posts: 3,218
Registered: ‎05-03-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Mizzou_Tiger,

 

I agree. The magnitude of the issue is worse than people think. And I think the reason is because of how widespread this drought is this year. I mean, I've traveled through parts of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and back through a different part of Indiana, and I have seen maybe one, or two, fields that I would call even close to average. The rest is not only below average, but way below average. And by the way, I'm not an agronomist or a plant pathologist. I'm just a guy walking by the house fire saying, "Hey that house is on fire." When a fireman or a fire inspector would notice that not only is it on fire, but there is an LP tank too close to the home and this baby is gonna blow. In other words, I'm doing a surface examination of this crop, when a real crop expert might even be finding bigger issues. So, yes, Missouri and now the talk is Iowa going backwards fast. Well, you take the (I) states that seem to be in crisis mode, I would say the fat lady is either singing or warming up.

 

Mike

Veteran Contributor
centralillinois
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎05-14-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Mike, it's nice to have you back but if the markets continue in a downtrend we may have to call in the B team.  See what you can do.

 

Frequent Contributor
tom s. in tn.
Posts: 42
Registered: ‎07-01-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

These crops are still green. If you want a shock, go to Alabama and look at corn thats fence post high and completly dead. Dead as in brown and broken over and not even salvagable as silage or any kind of fodder. Wish I could photo. Tom S. in Tn.

Veteran Advisor
roarintiger1
Posts: 1,603
Registered: ‎04-29-2011
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Could someone please call the USDA and tell them that the house is on fire?  Gotta love that analogy.....

"Failing to prepare is preparing to fail." "Success happens when preparation meets opportunity"
Contributor
jayalmill
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎03-24-2011
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Mike:

Assuming you're coming accross on 74.  In between the Oakwood IL and Ogden IL exits have received the most rain in the area.  Probably a couple more inches that the rest of the area.  If you want to see a little more normal things head south on State Route 49 for about 6 miles just North of Homer and some fields south of Homer.  Pretty good idea of how most of the stuff looks on the good dirt in Vermillion and Champaign Counties. 

South of Danville towards Georgetown and the IN/IL Stateline is some of the driest conditions we have had around this area. 

 

Thanks again for giving the updates on the tour and you're everyday updates they are greatly appreciated. 

Safe travels and try to stay cool!

Senior Contributor
too close for comfort
Posts: 226
Registered: ‎05-11-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Mike the fat lady had a few steps to climb to get to the stage so they are holding the show while she catches her breath. When she finally sings she's it will be loud and clear.

Esteemed Advisor
Hobbyfarmer
Posts: 4,111
Registered: ‎01-10-2012
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Did my own little tour into the corn field this morning and there are changes out there from 36 hrs ago and after yesterdays little 104+ & wind thing the changes are not for the betterment of 'ol hobbyfarmer. Two more of these and many here in Iowa will be in the market for a large oversided female vocalist too.

 

Yesterday was a very unkind day for the crops, many farmers appear to be onion farmers.

60% of the time, it works every time.

"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and promoted by mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a piece of dung by the clean end."
Community Manager
Jeff_a_Caldwell
Posts: 1,002
Registered: ‎04-29-2010
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Re: MDA Crop Tour (Day 2)

Hey, central, I'm working my way up from the end of the bench and tearing off my warm-ups...waiting for the coach to throw me in there! Ha! 

 

So, has the top come and gone or is this weather got everybody ruffled? 

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Jeff Caldwell
Agriculture.com Multimedia Editor
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