It’s official, corn harvest 2015 has begun on a few farms in South Dakota as early-planted crops and warm September weather have allowed cornfields to mature and dry down without facing an early freeze.
According to USDA-NASS, 2% of the state’s corn crop had been harvested as of Sunday, September 20th, which surprisingly is five percentage points behind the five-year average. Most of South Dakota’s corn crop is not ready, as 45% has matured, two percentage points ahead of the five-year average.
Most early corn harvesters are after high-moisture corn (24-33%), which can be ideal for feeding local livestock.
In the next couple of weeks progress will proceed rapidly and farmers will be delivering crops to their bin sites, ethanol plants and area elevators. Thankfully, elevators and rail lines are ready for the expected large harvest as handlers have experienced difficulty transporting grains due to a rail glut during the past few years.
As corn harvest commences in your neck of the woods, be sure to snap some photos for our 2nd annual #SDharvest15 photo contest for a chance to win hundreds in ethanol bucks. Just use the hashtag #SDharvest15 on either Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to enter.
You can also follow along this fall as farmers from across the country and the globe share their harvest pictures and stories via the Twitter hashtag: #Harvest15
Last but not least, we urge everyone to use extra caution on the roads during the next couple of months as farmers with large machinery, trucks and trailers do their best to efficiently transport their crops while respecting other drivers. Slow down, be patient and stay alert so we can all enjoy a safe and bountiful harvest.
Below are two tweets from this year’s corn harvest in South Dakota.
— Mike Deinert (@DeinertMike) September 14, 2015
— Louie Nigg (@LouieDN) September 16, 2015