Dog days of summer: Nebraska farmer’s crops in severe drought
Southeast Nebraska farmer Jerry Baysinger says the severe drought is taking a toll on some of his crops. “The dryland is looking pretty tough.”
The corn and soybean grower from Bruning tells Brownfield his fields have missed significant rains this summer. “We’ve only had about a little over 2.5 inches of rain since the third week of May and that has occurred in 12 rain events.”
The latest U.S. Drought monitor shows three counties near Bruning have been in the severe drought category for several weeks.
He says his irrigated corn is on pace to have a good yield, but that comes at a cost. “Right here in the dog days of summer it can be difficult to keep up especially with our electric systems, electric wells when we get put on load control in the middle of the day,” Baysinger says. “That can present some challenges.”
Baysinger says he and his employees are on night shifts to make sure the crops get watered. “We do a lot of work at night to make sure those particular systems are up and running when they kick on when we get released from load control because if you have a pivot that is stuck or not functioning right, it will sit there all night and then the next morning when you find it why you only get a couple of hours to fix it and then you’re on load control again for another 12 hours.”
Baysinger says the haze from the Canadian wildfires might adversely impact corn maturation but says high humidity has been helpful.