DOWNS – Central Illinois farmer Dennis Wentworth remained patient last week, despite a disruption in spring fieldwork due to cool and rainy weather.
Wentworth had the chance to catch-up on book work, watch the markets and try not to go stir crazy during the stay-at-home order.
“What an interesting and frustrating time we live in right now,” the Downs-area farmer told The Central Illinois Farm Network.
Before all of the recent rain, Wentworth’s fields were dry. In fact, those were some of the driest conditions he could remember in recent years. Wentworth is half done with corn planting and about 40 percent of his soybeans are in the ground.
“People were commenting they forgot how dry it was or what we used to experience in past years.”
Wentworth said he will know in four or five months if the early planting was worth it or if the later planted crops will perform better. Time will tell. There have been varying rainfall amounts across Wentworth’s area in recent weeks.
“As you went east and northeast, it seemed to be a little bit lighter,” he said.
The rain has caught most of the soil up to be at or above adequate moisture and now the ground needs to keep drying out in order to continue with the 2020 planting season here in Central Illinois.
Not only have farmers been dealing with questionable weather in recent days, but the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt everywhere. Wentworth feels for the families whether they are in the city or rural areas, as the challenges continue.
“I’ve been really impressed with how communities have hung together to try protecting each other,” Wentworth noted.
On his own operation, Wentworth is adapting to the times by keeping farm employees and family members separated and trying to minimize contact with others. This includes chemical or seed suppliers and repair shops.
“Everybody is really on board with trying to minimize contact and trying to prevent the spread of this disease,” added Wentworth.