Ron Miller

Ron Miller jumped into his combine in mid-September and was off to a good start in the Central Illinois crop reporting district. 

TOWANDA, Ill. — While harvest season started about the same time as usual for Ron Miller — mid-September in Central Illinois — the moisture levels were already what he would usually see a week or week and a half into harvest.

When Miller started combining corn on a farm between Lexington and Towanda in McLean County, moisture was 17 to 18 percent. Often moisture that low comes a little later in the season, he said.

He reported Sept. 17 that he was happy with the yields in the first week of harvest. The numbers were close to what he expected from early checks.

“It’s not as good as last year, maybe 5 to 10 percent less. That’s still pretty amazing,” said Miller, who farms with his son, Ben.

“The kernel depth is not like it was last year, but that would be hard to match,” he said.

Miller is pleased with the effects of using fungicides again this year.

“Most times we see a yield increase with it,” he said.

Phyllis Coulter is Northern Illinois field editor, writing for Illinois Farmer Today, Iowa Farmer Today and Missouri Farmer Today.