Cool temperatures, and late frosts delayed wheat harvest
At this time a year ago, Loren Swenson and Wayne Jeardoe, Swenson Jeardoe LLC., had long since been done with wheat harvest and had moved on to other endeavors.
A warm spring in 2012 had many farmers in the fields earlier than ever before.
Cool conditions this past spring, and late frosts in April and May, delayed the start of harvest.
Swenson and Jeardoe started cutting around June 1 last year, and finished up by June 15.
A year later, Swenson and Jeardoe were not in the field until June 24 and, as of Sunday, were about halfway done cutting their 600 acres of wheat.
Swenson, cutting west of Concordia on land that he and Jeardoe farm for Dr. Richard Kueker, was reporting good yields.
“They have been real good. Everything so far has been over 60 (bushels per acre),” Swenson said.
Swenson said the moisture levels have been running from 12-134 and test weights have been from 59-61 pounds.
“It has been really good,” Jeardoe said.
Swenson said he has not noticed any damage from the late frosts.
“We have been very blessed. We haven’t run into any yet,” Swenson said.
While the wheat has been good, harvest has not come off without a hitch for Swenson, Jeardoe and hired man Kadin Zimmerman, who is driving the grain cart. One of their grain trucks broke down over the weekend.
“That is part of it, I guess,” Swenson said.
When Swenson and Jeardoe finish up the wheat they have in Cloud County, they will move to Washington County where they farm about 700 acres.
Swenson began farming when he moved to Cloud County in 1977.
Jeardoe started working for Swenson as a hired man about seven years ago, and is now a partner in the operation.
“Since I started working with him our operation has almost doubled in acres,” Jeardoe said.
Along with farming, Swenson also operates Prairie Produce in Concordia with his wife, Joyce, and broadcasts Concordia High School sports on KNCK radio.
Jeardoe is handling more of the day-to-day operations of the farm.
“Wayne is an outstanding young man,” Swenson said, “I am very fortunate to have someone who will be able to take over.”
Along with wheat, Swenson and Jeardoe also grow corn, soybeans, grain sorghum and alfalfa and have cattle.
Weather conditions have been good for harvest, but Swenson wouldn’t mind a rain delay.
“I would like a rain because we have more soybeans than we have wheat,” Swenson said.
The National Weather Service Office is calling for the best chance of rain over the next six days on Thursday, and that is just a 20 percent chance.
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