Harvest Update: Most Ellis Area Wheat Disappointing
Reports from western Kansas continue to show disappointing yields for those farmers, as the 2013 wheat harvest enters its final days.
Farmers in the Ellis area averaged between 30 and 35 bushels per acre, according to Roxy Solomon at the Golden Belt Coop Association in Ellis. Yields ranged from the teens to 50 bushels per acre; test weight averaged 59.5 pounds and proteins averaged about 12.5. Solomon says the elevator took in just two-thirds the grain of last year’s poor crop; many acres were abandoned due to drought and freeze, and hailstorms hit many area farms.
Jason Ochs, Kansas Wheat Commissioner from Syracuse, says many farmers did not even put combines in the field due to the promise of very poor yields, and many area farmers say these were the worst conditions they had ever seen. The majority of wheat in Hamilton County was abandoned due to drought and freeze; Ochs had yields ranging from 5 to 21 bushels per acre on his farm, although most of it was between 10 and 15 bushels per acre. Ochs grows all white wheat; he said those varieties yielded good quality, with test weights averaging 63 pounds per bushel.
Art Koster at the Winona Feed and Grain, says harvest is wrapping up in northern Logan County. Yields range from 5 to 25 bushels per acre, test weights average 60 pounds per bushel, and protein ranging from10-15%. Koster says much of the area’s wheat crop was abandoned, and he will take in only about 30% of a normal harvest. This is the worst wheat crop he has seen since 1981, when the wheat crop was destroyed by a freeze in early May.
The outlook is brighter in Stafford County, where Stafford County Flour Mills took in more than 2.4 million bushels from their three locations. Crop quality was excellent, according to assistant manager Derek Foote; test weight averaged 60 pounds per bushel and protein averaged 13%. Yields ranged from 30 to 50 bushels per acre in the region, which was better than most farmers expected. For more than 100 years, Stafford County Flour Mills has produced Hudson Cream Flour products.
The 2013 Harvest Report is brought to you by the Kansas Wheat Commission, Kansas Association of Wheat Growers and sponsors Kansas City Board of Trade, and the Kansas Grain & Feed Association.