Dave Brennan is the Case IH Crop Production Specialist for Nebraska, Colorado and southern South Dakota. He grew up on a diversified farm in northwest Iowa, raising corn, soybeans and livestock. Joining Case IH right after college, Brennan has served in a variety of roles with the company, including parts and quality supervisor at the Grand Island combine manufacturing facility, field service rep, Manager of Field Service Operations, Parts & Service rep and Precision Farming Product Specialist, before assuming his current post. Read his report and let us know if you’ve used the new Case IH Precision Disk 500T air disk drill, and what you think about seeding with it.
According to last week’s USDA report, only 12 percent of corn has been planted in my area, which is less than half that was planted at this time last year. Western and central Nebraska and South Dakota have a pretty good start – probably 80 percent of farmers are planting now. Eastern Nebraska has been really slow to get started. I would say only 60 percent of producers are in the fields in that area. Colorado is doing really well, with 85 to 90 percent of growers out in the fields.
Whether or not farmers actually are running late, they feel like they are, compared to last year. So far, producers aren’t making major changes. With a limited supply of seed corn this year, growers are saying they need to get it right the first time because chances of replanting are diminishing.
Primarily corn has been planted so far, but a few soybeans are in the ground in different places. In the far northwestern part of Nebraska, sugar beets is the crop that’s furthest along in planting. The weather’s been cool in the evenings, mornings and at night, but days have been warm, so that’s allowed producers to get in the fields.
Growers have been using the Case IH True-Tandem™ 330 Turbo to get into wet fields and work the top layer of soil so it can dry out in the sunshine. The Case IH Early Riser® planter has been performing very well, allowing farmers to run a little faster. With producers trying to plant between rainstorms, they’ve been pushing their ground speeds, trying to cover as much ground as possible as quickly as they can. In wet fields, the Early Riser row unit carries its weight farther away from the seed trench, allowing growers to still achieve uniform seed depth and soil pressure.
I’ve had four customers who have been using the Case IH Precision Disk 500T to drill soybeans. They’ve been very pleased with it so far. They like the in-cab down control pressure and how the row unit more easily floats over rougher terrain. Watch this video to learn more about the new Precision Disk 500T.
The biggest issue farmers are thinking about in our area is the extreme fluctuation in commodity prices. Producers are fearful that corn is going to drop to $4 per bushel, so marketing has been tough recently.