Soybean Harvest - From the Ground Up

It’s harvest time and while the Brazos Valley has always been noted for the three Cs, corn, cotton, and cattle, there are also a few soybeans grown in our area. In this week’s From The Ground Up, Bob French says the 2010 crop looks like it will be a good one.

“We’ve got some late beans right now that we just finished watering last week, and we’re going to go back and water them in the next day or so, and we’ve never had any look that good. They are just loaded from top to bottom.”

Joe Wilder grows soybeans in Burleson County.

“Those cool nights the last week, few nights we had, ooh it really changed. The plants really looked like more blooms stuck.”

Wilder harvested his dry land soybeans first and noticed a fluctuation in the bushels being yielded per acre.

“In the same field you’ll run up on spots that will run up 70, 80, then you’ll run into a spot that’ll drop down 30 to 40, and why, other than different soil types.”

For the most part, soybeans haven’t caught on as a staple crop to grow in the Brazos River Bottom.

“We’ve been doing it now for 15 maybe 20 years. It’s worked real good for us as an alternate crop or a rotation type crop. A lot tried it last year, and that drought hit them, and they made nothing. Some of ‘em swore up and down they’d never try them again.”

Wilder says owning your harvesting equipment is a must when growing soybeans.

“The key to a soybean is you gotta own your own combines, because when they’re ready to cut, they’re ready. They don’t wait. They’ll all pop out on the ground, and when your’re depending on a custom harvester, you can’t always get him when you need him.”

And at harvest time, the last thing farmers want is rain.

“We’re at the point right now on our cotton that we don’t need any rain. It’s 70, 75% open, so we really don’t need anything on it, because if we get anything it’s going to lower our grades. There’s no way we can control it, so we gotta take what we’re gonna get and hope it all works out in the end.”

I’m Bob French, looking at Brazos Valley agriculture, From The Ground Up.

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