corn

Bob Nielsen / Purdue University

They say that Indiana corn should be knee-high by the fourth of July.

With changes in how we farm, that isn't really true these days -- but agronomists do say the crop is on track for a strong 2016 harvest.

The self-titled "corn guy" of Purdue University, Bob Nielsen, says the Cass County cornfield where he was scouting a few days before the holiday looked green and healthy -- though:

"It's not knee-high by the fourth of July -- it's head-high," he says.

David Cornwell / https://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_cornwell/14959884063

On Wednesday, the Environmental Protection Agency proposed to increase the amount of biofuel in gasoline, a metric known as the Renewable Fuel Standard. That means more ethanol produced in the state will find its way into people’s cars.

The increase is good news for Indiana’s farmers. Kyle Cline is the National Policy Advisor at the Indiana Farm Bureau.

“Indiana’s a leading state in ethanol production,” he says, “and [the RFS] has been very important for our farmers’ bottom line and business.”

United Soybean Board

More wet weather didn't help Indiana farmers make up for lost time in planting corn last week -- and they weren't able to supplement with soybeans, either.

It could mean some big decisions for growers heading into summer.

Indiana planted just seven percent more of its projected corn acreage in the past week, according to the latest USDA numbers.

Cause For 'Concern' As Corn Planting Slows

May 9, 2016
slowdevil / https://www.flickr.com/photos/slowdevil/3678747832/

Hoosier farmers didn't make much progress planting corn in the past week, after a strong early start -- and they're running out of time to get the state's signature crop in the ground.

Heavy spring rainfall didn't stop Indiana farmers from planting twice as much corn by the start of May as they had in 2015. They were on their way to planting a projected 2.6 percent more acres of corn than last year, despite a glut of the crop worldwide.

David Cornwell/https://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_cornwell/3818629571

The USDA is estimating that American farmers may plant more corn this summer than they have in years.

 

But with the news that China will begin selling off its huge corn stockpiles, economists say prices could suffer.

Indiana accounts for 2.6 percent of the national increase. Purdue University agricultural economist Chris Hurt says the state increase came from fields that went unplanted last summer due to floods.

Buttery Crop Goes Pop

Feb 5, 2016
Ingrid Taylar / https://www.flickr.com/photos/taylar/

After riding high for a few years on a wave of butter-flavored prosperity, Indiana’s popcorn production dropped by more than a quarter last year.

In 2014, Hoosier farmers planted and harvested more popcorn than they ever had before, producing more than 430 million pounds of the stuff. But last year, they produced only 310 million pounds.

Greg Matli, a statistician for the US Department of Agriculture’s Indiana field office, says Indiana popcorn became a victim of its own bounty.

Ben Loehrke / https://www.flickr.com/photos/benloehrke/

After more than a year of delays, the Environmental Protection Agency has released numbers for the Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS—the amount of biofuel which must be to be blended into the nation’s gas supply —for the years 2014, 2015 and 2016.

The numbers are up, and that’s big news in Indiana, one of the largest ethanol-producing states in the nation.

U.S. Department of Agriculture / https://www.flickr.com/photos/usdagov/8227778574/

A new corn disease has been discovered in Indiana, and it’s the first confirmed case in the country.

The disease called "tar spot" is more commonly found in Mexico and Central America, but its presence in the Hoosier state should not cause any immediate problems.

Kiersten Wise, Purdue Extension Specialist for Field Crop Diseases, says a fungus causes the disease and it discolors crops in ways other pests do.

Joshua Duffy / https://www.flickr.com/photos/joshduffyphoto/7283981926

Indiana’s farmers are expected to produce significantly less corn this year while soybeans didn’t take as bad a hit after flooding that devastated parts of the state. 

Indiana corn crops are expected to decline by about 20-percent from last year, while soybeans are only down 9-percent.  That follows the second-wettest June and July in the state’s recorded history. 

Yet Purdue corn specialist Bob Nielsen says the expected output is a mixed bag across the state.

Underwater Crops Could Soak Indiana Farmers

Jul 14, 2015
Joshua Duffy / https://www.flickr.com/photos/joshduffyphoto/7283981926

This summer is shaping up to be one of the wettest on record in Indiana.

And that means many farmers across the state are being flooded with problems.

A good portion of Indiana’s corn and soybeans have been heavily damaged by the rain – some fields destroyed. 

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Barbara Brosher explains how that could impact your next trip to the grocery store.

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