The winter wheat harvest is getting underway in Nebraska, with the most activity so far in southern counties.
Nebraska Wheat Board executive director Royce Schaneman says the weather has been favorable and they hope to avoid any severe storms during harvest
“For the most part, we’ve had the hot dry weather which has really dried the crop down and gotten things rolling in the state,” Schaneman says. “We did get hot and dry but we had enough moisture early to carry us through. We’re trying to avoid the storms now, get the crop in the bin and avoid any hail.”
Schaneman says wheat growers are anticipating a decent harvest but protein may be down.
“We’re looking forward to better-than-average yield and so far, from what we’ve seen come in, proteins aren’t quite as high as what we’d like to see,” he says. “With the more mild growing conditions, that means more bushels per acre but maybe not as quite as high protein.”
Schaneman says yields overall should be above-average.
“We’re probably going to be 45 or 46 bushels per acre on a statewide average,” he says. “I think we’re going to have some guys have tremendous yields but until that averages out, we’re looking mid-40s.”
Schaneman says early in the growing season, there were signs of some rust and fungal diseases but fortunately, no major outbreak
Nebraska is among the top 12 wheat-producing states in the U.S., with one-and-a-half million acres in production.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton