12:00am

Mon July 16, 2012
Business and the Economy

Corn Status in the State's Number One Producer

When it comes to rainfall, it may be a case of ‘too little-too late’ for Kentucky’s corn growers. This summer’s drought hit western Kentucky corn fields first and hard.  In Union County, which is the leading corn producer in the Commonwealth, Extension Agent Rankin Powell says soils are very deep and hold water well.  It gives Powell reason for hope, but he still worries, any improvement in this year’s corn crop is unlikely.

"I may be fooled and we may have a better corn yield than it looks like right now.  With the soils we have we will usually have a better than expected corn yield in a dry year and not as good as expected in a wet year,” said Powell.

Powell worries the corn yield could drop from 168 bushels per acre to about 100 bushels.  However, Powell holds out hope for their soybean crop..

“Well it will do a whole lot for the soybeans.  See, soybeans are a different thing. They’re  just now blooming and putting on pods.  The rain now could make them pretty close to a normal crop,” added Powell.

Extension Agent Rankin Powell says irrigation systems are helping.  Powell says they’re found on one-fourth of farming operations