Harvest progressing on summer, early fall crops
By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican
The focus of the fall harvest will soon shine on this year’s corn crop, but farmers have already been busy with potato, bean and millet harvest.
For Frenchman Valley Produce, potato harvest started in their fields in Kansas several months ago. With that completed, harvest began in the Imperial area.
FVP co-owner Tim May said they’ve completed about 25 percent of the local harvest.
During the first part of the harvest, May said they dug the amount of potatoes they could cool, process and ship by the next day.
On Tuesday, they began putting potatoes in their on-site storage facilities. This will make harvest go much faster, he noted.
He said the recent heat wave has been a concern because of the heat the potato holds and the difficulty to cool down large piles of potatoes. He’s hoping for cooler weather ahead.
Bean harvest past halfway
Harvest of edible dry beans in the area began about two weeks ago with pinto beans, according to Jack Schneider, field man for Trinidad Benham.
He estimated the pinto bean harvest to be at the halfway point. He placed progress of the kidney bean harvest at two-thirds complete.
He said they are pleased with the quality of this year’s beans. Plus, yields for both crops have been especially strong with yields running from 45-50 bushels per acre.
As of Wednesday morning, cash price for pintos stood at $40 per hundred-weight (cwt) and $53 per cwt for kidneys.
Many of the Proso millet fields in the area have been harvested or soon will be.
Tom Luhrs of Luhrs Seed and Conditioning said they have yet to start on the seed harvest of their white wonder fox millet.
He said they have swathed all of it into windrows and are waiting for it to dry down.
The variety is a forage crop so the windrows need to dry before they can get it through the combine, he said.
Farmers waiting to drill wheat
Luhrs said many wheat farmers in the area keep waiting for rain before drilling next year’s crop. He’s one of those farmers.
He said the dry conditions this fall are worse, compared to last year’s summer drought conditions.
At his farm northeast of Enders, he said it’s been seven weeks since any rain has fallen.
While he wants his millet seed windrows to dry down, he said he’d sure take a rain, as would most farmers in the area.