Michigan's apple growers are on track for a record harvest this year, but other crops, not so much. MSU Extension Grazing & Crop Management Educator Jerry Lundquist says Mecosta County's primary crops – hay, corn, and soybeans – aren't doing so well mainly because of the weather.
“Crop growth and maturity is quite variable across Mecosta County and the surrounding regions. We've had above normal heat, but many areas have had below normal rainfall,” he says.
Lundquist says wheat, corn, and soybean yields across Mecosta County are below normal and with corn and potato harvests starting this week and other crops to follow, there isn't much time left to recover.
And, again because of unusual summer weather, Mecosta County's largest crop, hay, is a mixed bag.
“The first cutting hay yield was above normal for most farms, but then the second cuttings and somewhat the third cuttings were below normal.”
But the worst news, says Lundquist, is that commodity prices are down.
“Corn prices have fallen dramatically, wheat prices fell this summer, the soybean price is down, and hay prices are down as well.”
He notes that the most farmers in the area can hope for is more rain before the harvesting season is over.