It’s that time of year again where farmers are scouting their corn crop and, of course, posting photos on social media to show off their big ears. But on our farm, 2016 has been one of those years where everything just seems to go wrong.
Naturally, it started even before planting could get underway. It was a wet, wet spring. Our fields were flooded. We had a hard time working up the soil and were delayed in doing any pre-planting spraying. When it came to actual planting, we started weeks late. We barely got the corn crop in the ground before the insurance cutoff date.
Then, the growing season got underway, and the bad luck continued. We completely dried out. “If this batch of rain misses us, then the corn is definitely dead,” became somewhat of a motto in our house. Sadly, the rain nearly always missed us — almost like Mother Nature was doing it on purpose. We went weeks without any precipitation. When the rain did finally come, it tried to make up for the previous weeks by flooding us out. But it was too late.
With all the adverse weather conditions, our corn yields have taken a huge hit. When scouting fields, we find ears that are half filled out or dwarfed. We’ve had to forego the social media bragging because there definitely won’t be a bumper crop come fall.
But thanks to crop insurance, one bad season doesn’t (necessarily) mean our farm is going to go under.
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[This article was originally published on AGDAILY as a guest column.]