Seminole Crop E News

Agricultural News for Farmers and Agribusiness in SW Georgia

Archive for the ‘Crops’ Category

December Weather Outlook

Posted by romeethredge on December 4, 2015

We have been very fortunate to have had some dry weather and folks have picked a lot of cotton and combined a lot of soybeans the last couple of weeks. The first 2 weeks of November were tough.

The weather has caused problems for small grains. See my related post, Small grains look bad.

 The latest climate outlook from NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center is out and shows that for the Southeast, December looks like it has a good chance to continue to be wetter and warmer than normal.

Pam Knox, UGA CAES, says, ” Most long-range models show that we are not likely to feel the impacts of Arctic air anytime soon, although a change in January and February is likely.  The wet storm track associated with El Niño will continue to bring storms through the Southeast on a regular basis, although there will be some dry days as well.”

Go to UGA’s Pam Knox’s Climate and Agriculture in the Southeast Site for more information.


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Posted in Crops | Leave a Comment »

South Carolina Flood Story – Farmers

Posted by romeethredge on December 4, 2015

South Carolina county agent, Justin Ballew, has a great video on his website about the farmers perspective of the South Carolina flood this past fall. Click here to go to his blog and the video. 

It has several farmers and other ag leaders telling the story and some good video.

One thing that was said is that the loss was over $400 Million. Also there were 3 strikes against agriculture in SC this year, 1. Low commodity prices, 2.Drought and then 3.Rain and flooding and rain again.

I pray that things will go better for the growers there and growers all over who are facing tough times.

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Posted in Crops, Economics | Leave a Comment »

Soil is Important

Posted by romeethredge on January 30, 2015

NRCS representative, Anita Tabb, here in Donalsonville, reminded me that 2015 is the “International Year of Soils”.

The soil that God created is a miraculous thing. It’s what plants grow in.  Someone the other day said, “Most food comes from plants”,  yes, but really all food comes from plants or animals and organisms that eat plants. Those plants mostly grow in soil.

My ABAC College professor, Mr. Sibbett, said “Dirt is what’s under your fingernails, soil is where plants grow.” I still lovingly call it dirt sometimes.

Here’s a good general 2 minute video about soil.

Posted in Crops, Fertilization | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

2015 Donalsonville Production Meetings

Posted by romeethredge on January 9, 2015

We have four agricultural production meetings planned here in Donalsonville. We will meet at the Lions Hall for these educational programs. Go ahead and put these on your calendar and we look forward to seeing you there. Pesticide applicator credit will be given.

Call or email our office if you plan to come so we can make plans. 229-524-2326 or


January 28 – Peanut Production Meeting

11:00a.m.  Donalsonville Lions Hall , Lunch Served

Speakers:Dr. Scott Montfort, UGA Extension Peanut Scientist

                  Dr. Nathan Smith, UGA Extension Ag Economist (by Video uplink)


January 29 – Cotton Production Meeting

12:00 noon Donalsonville Lions Hall , Lunch Served

Speakers:Dr. Jared Whittaker , UGA Extension Agronomist

                  Dr. Phillip Roberts, UGA Extension Entomologist

Soybean Production will be discussed after Cotton


February 16 – Corn Production Meeting

8:00a.m Seminole/Miller Counties in Donalsonville, Breakfast  Served

Speakers: Dr. Dewey Lee, UGA Extension Grains Scientist

                   Dr. Nathan Smith, UGA Extension Economist

                   Dr.  John Bernard, UGA (Silage)


February 26 – Weed Control Meeting

12:00  Noon Seminole/Miller Counties in Donalsonville, Lunch Served

Speakers: Dr. Eric Prostko, UGA Extension Weed Science

                   Dr. Stanley Culpepper, UGA Extension Weed Scientist

Posted in Corn, Cotton, Crops, Peanuts, Soybeans | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

More of a…. “Getting-By”… year

Posted by romeethredge on January 2, 2015

It looks like 2015 will be a tough year for row crop prices.

Here is what agribusinesman Tommy Dollar recently said. “One thing we can teach our younger generation is that farming cycles, and you need to be prepared for the next DOWNturn. (We are here)”

UGA Ag economist Nathan Smith says 2015 may be a “gettin-by year”.

Here’s some news from UGA.

“While cattlemen can expect good news at this year’s Ag Forecast events, row crop farmers will get disappointing news. Cotton prices are hovering at 60 cents per pound, peanuts are $400 per ton and corn prices are around $4.10 per bushel. Those are discouraging figures for Georgia farmers who are planning next year’s crops.”

“It’s not as rosy a forecast for row crops as we’ve had in years past,” said UGA Extension agricultural economist Nathan Smith.

For peanut growers, the news is especially grim as prices could fall even more as acreage is expected to increase in 2015, Smith said. “This year is more of a getting-by year, in terms of cash flow. The outlook isn’t as bright for row crops,” he said.

“I think, in 2015, cattlemen will be looking at pretty similar prices to what they had this past year, depending on when they sold. Last year we started off the year somewhere around $1.80 per pound for a 500-pound calf. That market today is almost $2.75. You’ve seen almost a $1 increase in a year,” said Curt Lacy, the Extension livestock economist based on the UGA campus in Tifton.

Farmers who sold their stock in January or February of 2014 are going to receive a much better price this year, he said.

Lacy expects prices to remain high, which is good news for cattlemen in Miller, Colquitt and Early counties. Those three south Georgia counties finished in the top 10 in farm gate values for beef cow production in 2013, according to the UGA CAED, joining Morgan, Madison, Carroll, Wilkes, Franklin, Jackson and Coffee counties.

“I think, in general, this is about where we’re going to be for the next year or two,” Lacy said.

These and other issues will be discussed at the 2015 Ga Ag Forecast meetings across the state. Our closest will be in Bainbridge on Jan 16th. You can Pre-register now.

Posted in Agriculture, Corn, Crops, Economics, Peanuts | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

USDA Farm Program Help

Posted by romeethredge on October 3, 2014

USDA Announces ARC/PLC Timeline and Decision Tools

Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack announced on September 26th the availability of the ARC/PLC web-based decision tools. He later announced that farm owners may begin to update their yield history and reallocate base acres through their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office. In addition, the timeline for landowners and producers to make decisions regarding reallocating base acreage, updating program yields, ARC or PLC program election and program signup has been announced.

ARC/PLC Timeline

 September 29, 2014 – February 27, 2015: Owners have a one-time opportunity to reallocate the farm’s base acres or update yields.

 November 17, 2014 – March 31, 2015: Producers make election which will remain in effect for the 2014-2018 crop years, of the following: 1) PLC or ARC County on a covered commodity-by-commodity basis; or 2) ARC Individual for all covered commodities on the farm.

 Mid-April 2015 – Summer 2015: Producers sign contracts to participate in ARC/PLC for 2014 and 2015 crop years.

Base Reallocation and Yield Update

The web decision tools handle base and yield decisions. Spreadsheet base reallocation and yield update calculators are available from FSA and the National Center for Peanut Competitiveness. A simple base reallocation spreadsheet from USDA Farm Service Agency that uses farm serial number is posted at:

To handle farms with multiple tracts, The National Center for Peanut Competitiveness Base Reallocation and Yield Update Calculator is setup to allow a farmer to enter acres and yields by tract. Instructions and the spreadsheet can be downloaded at:

Download the Preliminary Base Acreage and Payment Yields Decision Calculator below.


State FSAs are in the process of training their staff on the ARC/PLC program. Each state Extension will be working with the Farm Service Agency and other cooperators and supporters on statewide meetings for landowners and producers. Landowners and producers have time to analyze their decisions.

The best thing they can do at this time besides getting the crops harvested is gather production history, including crop insurance records, going back to at least 2008 or ten years if possible.


Nathan Smith, Don Shurley, UGA Ag Economists

Posted in Crops, Economics | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

More Rain…. soggy

Posted by romeethredge on April 18, 2014

It’s has been a wet April and it’s just the 18th. Our normal rainfall for the whole month is 3.8 inches and usually 2.5 by this point in April. But this year we have received 11.25 inches and there’s more coming today. It has slowed field operations considerably. Also, we have seen a good bit of erosion in fields and some damage to crops that are up such as corn and snapbeans.

We had some of the fastest falling rain I have seen when we received 4.88″ of rain in an hour and 15 minutes on April 7th. Here are some photos of problems.



Mitchell county agent Andy Shirley and I were checking out this corn that was washed badly recently.


Posted in Crops, Water | 1 Comment »

2014 Farm Bill

Posted by romeethredge on February 5, 2014

Here’s some preliminary information concerning the 2014 Farm Bill, put together by UGA Extension Ag Economists,  Nathan Smith and Don Shurley.


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Posted in Corn, Cotton, Crops, Economics, Peanuts | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Georgia Ag Forecast 2014

Posted by romeethredge on January 2, 2014

 It’s time for our Ag Forecast for 2014.

There will be one held in Bainbridge, Ga and now is the time put it on your calendar and register for it. Go to this link for more information and to register,


The University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Georgia Farm Bureau and the Georgia Department of Agriculture presents the Georgia Ag Forecast every year.

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In each session, UGA Ag Economics faculty will give an overview of the upcoming year. Participants will leave the meeting with a preview of the upcoming year and a copy of the  Ag Forecast Book, which provides a detailed analysis of each major product produced in Georgia. Also this year the topic of farm succession planning will be explored.


Have you thought about the future of your business? What happens if none of your children want to take over the farm? These concerns and more will be addressed by our keynote speaker, Will Thompson.

Thompson, a Macon attorney, will speak about farm succession planning and offer advice for farmers and agribusiness owners.



Thursday, January 30: Bainbridge, Cloud (Decatur County) Livestock Facility             

  • Check-in at 7:00 am      with breakfast line opening at 7:30.

  • Seminar      follows  from 8:00 – 9:30 am.




Posted in Crops, Economics | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Farm Program Participants Need To Consider Wetlands

Posted by romeethredge on November 15, 2013


ATHENS, GA, November 14, 2013 – Are you a USDA farm program participant planning on clearing, draining or manipulating land for agricultural use? If so, you may want to read the following information that can affect your eligibility.

State Conservationist James E. Tillman Sr., for the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service in Georgia wants to remind USDA farm program participants who are planning to clear lands to consider that any wetlands they may encounter during land clearing operations are still subject to the wetland conservation provision of the Food Security Act of 1985 (commonly referred to as the 1985 Farm Bill), as amended. Tillman stated, “That while subsequent versions of the Farm Bill have provided many changes to the programs and the rules over the years, the wetland conservation provisions have remained intact.” He added, “Even geographically isolated wetlands are subject to these provisions though isolated wetlands may or may not be subject to other wetland protection laws.”

The wetland conservation compliance provision was first introduced in the 1985 Farm Bill to discourage the production of agricultural commodities on converted wetlands after 1985. The rule requires that people who convert wetlands to allow production of agricultural commodities will be ineligible for USDA farm program benefits until the functions of the converted wetlands are mitigated or restored. The rule provides protection for those producers who produce commodities on wetlands providing that the wetlands were historically in production prior to 1985 and production was still possible in 1985.

Georgia’s Acting State Executive Director for the USDA-Farm Service Agency, David Laster, also wants to remind producers and program participants that the 1985 Act has broad eligibility implications and impacts that reach across the USDA Agencies. Laster cautioned, “Some of the lost USDA program benefits can include conservation practice payments from Farm Bill Programs, disaster payments, price support payments, as well as commodity and farm loans.”

In addition to the Farm Bill’s wetland provision, wetlands may be under further jurisdiction of other laws such as Section 404 of the Clean Water Act which is administered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE). USDA producers should also contact the USACOE if they intend to conduct any activity that constitutes a discharge of dredged or fill material into wetlands or other waters, prior to starting the work.

Because the laws and regulations regarding wetlands are just as variable and complex as wetlands themselves, it is in the farm program participant’s best interest to seek guidance before impacting an area that has the potential to meet wetland criteria. USDA program participants are encouraged to visit their USDA Service Center’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) office and complete an AD-1026 form prior to any clearing activity.

In order to further assist USDA farm program participants in understanding wetland conservation compliance, the NRCS has published a brochure entitled Wetlands and Conservation Compliance: WHAT EVERY GEORGIA FARMER NEEDS TO KNOW. This brochure is available free of charge at local USDA Service Centers throughout the state or available electronically for download at You may find your local USDA Service Center office in the government listings or in the white pages of your phone book under “U.S. Government Department, Agriculture, Department of,” or by visiting

Posted in Crops, Water | Leave a Comment »

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