Some Iowa corn and soybean growers are starting the harvest process, but not as many as usual, in part due to the unseasonably cool summer which slowed plants from maturing. Meteorologist Bryce Anderson, of Data Transmission Network, says the start of harvest will be later this fall compared to past years, but farmers likely don’t need to worry about an early frost causing damage.
“We’re probably on track to have a normal first frost occurrence,” Anderson says. “I don’t think we are going to be in danger of having an early frost kill off our crop prematurely. A lot of people have been asking about that because we are about two weeks behind, in many respects.” Anderson doesn’t see any of the crops coming out of the fields too quickly.
“I think what we are headed for is a harvest season that’s going to be dragged out and that’s going to increase the drying costs that a lot of producers are going to have to deal with,” Anderson says. “We’ll probably have a little bit higher moisture corn to work with than we’d like to have just because of how slow the season has been.” He predicts farmers likely won’t be done in their fields in October this year.
“We could see a harvest season that takes us into November, much like we did last year in some parts of the Midwest, just because of the fact that we’re not in the field like we’d like to be and our maturity rate is running anywhere from ten days to two weeks late,” Anderson says. This July was the coolest July in Iowa history. The average temperature for the month was only around 68-degrees, breaking a record that dated back to 1891.