Wheat harvest starts, looks promising
With wheat turning in some areas, farmers began harvesting this week. The first truckloads were delivered to grain elevators in Marion on Monday and in Peabody and Hillsboro on Tuesday.
While harvest is just starting, seeing good wheat in the first couple days is promising, Marion Cooperative Grain and Supply manager John Ottensmeier said.
“It’s always about the quantity, but it’s also good for the farmers to have better quality,” he said.
If there is no rain, harvest can be finished in a couple weeks, but that might not be possible this year, Ottensmeier said.
“They’re talking rain this weekend,” he said. “Any time you get a rain it’ll stretch it out some more. Last year we got rain like every week so it was like a month-long harvest. If we miss some of those weekend rains it could really be two weeks.”
Marion farmer Alan Hett has a few days until his wheat is ready, so a weekend rain would be a setback.
Despite being close, Hett isn’t ready to make any guesses how his crop is doing.
“I don’t even want to try to predict yet,” he said.
Once the climax hits, grain elevators could be averaging 50,000 bushels a day, but early in the harvest that number is closer to 10,000 or 15,000 bushels a day.