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Missouri's corn and soybean harvest still looking good

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Missouri's corn and soybean harvests continue to look good, especially corn.

November estimates from the United States Department of Agriculture shows that corn growers are averaging 145 bushels an acre, which so far is the fourth-highest return in state history.

Bob Garino, the USDA's statistician for Missouri, says weather conditions played a big role in corn's successful year.

"There was adequate soil moisture through the entire growing season, which was important," Garino said. "We had a lot of rain in late May (and) kind of in June and July, but they were able to get the crop in for the most part."

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He continued, "The rain, it might have had a few places where there was a little bit (of) flooding, but overall it wasn't a big deal for corn … once the rains quit in mid-July and August, it kind of dried out (and) pollination went well, and it just turned out to be a good year."

Garino added that Missouri corn growers are experiencing the best three-year run they've ever had.

"Last year was a huge record, (and) 2013 was a pretty good crop," Garino said. "(In) 2014, production was about 629 million bushels ... it was a great year."

As for soybeans, spring and early summer rainfall caused delays in planting, but the bean harvest is coming in at 43 bushels per acre, which is that crop's fourth-highest yield on record in Missouri.

"There's about a million acres (worth) of soybeans that couldn't get planted because of all the wet weather we had in May, June, and July," Garino said, "so we have that situation where we've got less harvested acres than we typically would have … however, given that, we still had a pretty good year."

As of Wednesday, soybeans were selling between $8 and $9 a bushel, and corn was ranging roughly between $3.50 and $4 a bushel.

Final harvest numbers for 2015 won't be available until January.

Meanwhile, wheat farmers are having more success getting their winter crops planted. The recent dry spell had delayed planting, as the ground was too dry.

"We're (now) over 90 percent planted for the fall," Garino said. "The crop conditions are in fairly good shape so far; we've had some good rains (this month)."

Missouri's winter wheat crop is regularly harvested in May and June.

Follow Marshall Griffin on Twitter:  @MarshallGReport

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Missouri Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a proud alumnus of the University of Mississippi (a.k.a., Ole Miss), and has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off the old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Mason, and their cat, Honey.
Marshall Griffin
St. Louis Public Radio State House Reporter Marshall Griffin is a native of Mississippi and proud alumnus of Ole Miss (welcome to the SEC, Mizzou!). He has been in radio for over 20 years, starting out as a deejay. His big break in news came when the first President Bush ordered the invasion of Panama in 1989. Marshall was working the graveyard shift at a rock station, and began ripping news bulletins off an old AP teletype and reading updates between songs. From there on, his radio career turned toward news reporting and anchoring. In 1999, he became the capital bureau chief for Florida's Radio Networks, and in 2003 he became News Director at WFSU-FM/Florida Public Radio. During his time in Tallahassee he covered seven legislative sessions, Governor Jeb Bush's administration, four hurricanes, the Terri Schiavo saga, and the 2000 presidential recount. Before coming to Missouri, he enjoyed a brief stint in the Blue Ridge Mountains, reporting and anchoring for WWNC-AM in Asheville, North Carolina. Marshall lives in Jefferson City with his wife, Julie, their dogs, Max and Liberty Belle, and their cat, Honey.