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Hot weather provides another challenge for soybean farmers

WALWORTH COUNTY (WKOW) — With a slow start to growing season, it’s been a difficult year for Wisconsin farmers. They say this heat brings a mixed bag for their crops.

Mike Cerney grows corn and soybeans at his farm in Sharon in Walworth County. A wet spring meant 10 percent of his acres were never crop-ready and even in the fields he was able to plant, some of his beans didn’t take root until the first week of June.

“We’re running out of time for the beans to have really any kind of yield,” he said.

At this point in the summer, Cerney said his soybeans should be between knee and thigh high and pods should be starting to form. The crop planted in June is only shin high and still hasn’t flowered yet.

“It’s tough to see a year like this where you did everything you thought was possible and in the best interest of the crop and just Mother Nature didn’t want to play with you this year,” he said.

Fortunately, Cerney said the weather has been helping his corn.

“We need to keep this heat coming and the moisture so we don’t stress the crop that doesn’t have a root system,” he said.

For soybeans though, Cerney said it’s less about temperature than it is about daylight hours and while the summer’s brought plenty of sunshine he said heat means weeds will grow as well.

He said he was able to plant a few good acres in late April but he’s still expecting at most 75 percent of his crop to yield, meaning a significant loss.

“Everyone’s gonna be farming at a loss this year, no doubt about it,” Cerney said. “But I’m at an age where I don’t have 30 or 40 years to recover the loss from this year.”

He’s hoping greener pastures come sooner rather than later.

“Some way or another, somehow we’ll get through it,” he said.

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