Cool summer concerns local farmers

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – Some may enjoy the cool summer temperatures, but the below normal temps are raising concern for corn growers around the area.

The last two summers, temperatures soared in the 90s exceeding 100 degrees at times. The heat brought challenges to people who grew corn.

Purdue Corn Extension specialist Bob Nielsen said the weather brings obstacles for growers each year, including cool summers like this one.

Nielsen said, “2009 is a year a lot of folks are beginning to compare this one [summer] to simply because they were both cool summers.”

Nielsen said it brings up the question, “Will this year’s crop relate to the 2009 season?”

Even though the 2009 season brought in record yields at the time, there were problems farmers had to deal with especially toward the end of the season.

“It ended up being a very late harvest, very wet grain. Farmers had to spend a lot of money drying the grain after harvest and there was a lot of disease in the grain,” said Nielsen.

Nielsen said overall the corn crop is doing well. But he said if the cooler temperatures stick around, they may bring problems for corn growers in the future.

“Some people worry about where we are at this point and whether or not it could lead to a similar scenario, like it did back in 2009,” added Nielsen.

According to the Climate Prediction Center, temperatures are likely to trend below the average the next couple weeks. The average high temperatures in July are in the mid-80s, with average lows in the mid-60s. However, the three-month outlook shows around normal temperatures for Indiana.

“Statewide basis, this crop looks very good. It’s very healthy. If we can maintain these temperatures in the somewhat normal area, that’s going to cause minimal stress on the crop,” Nielsen explained.

Nielsen said the weather needs to cooperate the next two months like it has the first half of the season. He said it is still too early to determine yield numbers.

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