RAYVILLE – Farmers in northern Louisiana are rushing to get the corn crop out of the field before Hurricane Laura hits, and the crop so far looks good.
Laura also has the potential to inflict serious damage on the state’s soybean crops.
Keith Collins, LSU’s AgCenter agent in the parishes of Richland, Franklin and Ouachita, said about half of the corn crop has been harvested in his area.
The feedback is good. “We’ll finish where we were last year, maybe better, but not a bumper crop,” said Collins.
The average yield appears to be around 185 bushels per acre.
Laura is expected to hit Louisiana near the Texas line like a hurricane and move into northern Louisiana and Arkansas like a tropical storm.
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Collins worries about Laura’s wind. “This corn is dry and very susceptible to breakage,” he said.
Wind gusts of over 60 mph would cause damage, but winds of 40 to 45 mph could knock down the rods as well.
Harvesters can cut corn that has been thrown to the ground, but the process has slowed down considerably. “Hopefully with the lines, they’re more inclined to accept it. If it takes off, they can get it, ”Collins said. A huge Delta IV Heavy rocket
Bruce Garner, AgCenter agent in the parishes of West Carroll and Morehouse, said corn crops were good in his area. With corn prices low, farmers need a high yield to break even. “From a performance perspective, we’re going to be a little above average,” he said.
A producer entered a national yield competition with a yield of 248 bushels per acre on a small acreage.
Harvest is delayed this year due to wet conditions which delayed planting.
A drought occurred after most of the corn was dented. “We just had very good drying conditions,” Garner said.
The farmers worked tirelessly. “My children are trying very hard to get it done before this time,” he said.
In the south, the maize crop is doing well.
“It was really nice,” said Justin Dufour, AgCenter agent for the parish of Avoyelles. “I think a lot of producers are happy.”
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The weather cooperated throughout the growing season.
Performance reports are good. “We have had several producers who have exceeded an average of 200 bushels,” said Dufour.