crops

This spring's wet weather and flooding challenged Indiana farmers trying to plant their crops with enough time for them to fully grow. Many delayed planting, some grew no crops at all. 

Uneven, wet weather is complicating the growing season for Indiana farmers.

There’s much more cash cropland this week that has too much moisture in its soil than at this time last year, according to the USDA’s latest crop progress report.

And the federal agency says the current condition of Indiana’s corn and soybeans isn’t as good as it was a year ago.

A team led by professors at Purdue University is wrapping up a six-year project with Midwestern corn farmers to help them adapt to climate change.

Useful to Useable was a $5 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Linda Prokopy, a professor of Natural Resources Social Sciences at Purdue University, says the aim wasn’t only to help farmers.

“My motivation was to really figure out how we can help farmers help themselves and help the land and help the water by having better access to information,” Prokopy says.

kov-A-c / https://www.flickr.com/photos/yovac/14427821648

Freezing temperatures this week are concerning Purdue University agricultural specialists.

Peaches, grapes and wheat are especially vulnerable right now. Greg Bossaer, assistant program leader for agriculture and natural resources at Purdue Extension, says it’s possible that prolonged freezing temperatures could decrease the supply or increase the price of affected crops.

“The jury’s still out here, and it’s probably going to depend on these next few evenings,” he says.

Charlotte Tuggle / WBAA

Second-generation West Lafayette farmer Kevin Underwood has been collecting model tractors since grade school. 

But he can’t afford to replace the tractors he makes a living with because of the perfect storm of too much rain and a property tax structure that charges him based on what he pulled out of the ground three years ago.

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.

Sylvia Bao / http://indianapublicmedia.org/news/

Indiana farmland values declined in all three categories last year for the first time since 2009 -- but a Purdue economist says the drop was expected.

In Purdue’s latest land value survey, top-quality Hoosier farmland values dropped a little more than 5-percent in the last year. 

Average farmland values decreased by nearly 4-percent, while low-quality values are down just shy of 5-percent. 

But Purdue economist Michael Langemeier says he’s not surprised – revenue from crop sales have been down, which usually leads to a drop in land value. 

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.

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

With the prospect of Tropical Depression Bill swinging up across Indiana this weekend, farmers and some homeowners are keeping a wary eye on the sky. Across the northern third of the state, ditches are full, some fields have standing water and a few riverside homes are being sandbagged.

Several rivers in northern Indiana are flooding or in danger of flooding – the Tippecanoe, the Iroquois, the Wabash and in Sumava Resorts in Newton County, the Kankakee, where some residents were filling sandbags Wednesday.