According to reports from Kansas Wheat, the first week of wheat harvest, June 13-17, saw combines just beginning to roll in south-central Kansas.
In Barber County, David Gaddis, general manager of OK Coop Grain Co., Kiowa, Kan., said the first load of the season came into the elevator late Friday, June 10. Yield variability was expected, and the first week of harvest saw yields swinging from 18 to 50 bushels per acre. But that same drought and later rains brought above-average proteins and test weights of 59 to 60 pounds per bushel.
On June 13, Jason Brown, MKC vice president, said loads started trickling into the Danville, Kan., location in Harper County. Yields were expected to average 30 to 40 bushels per acre, with early fields ranging from 16 to 60 bushels per acre. Brown said test weights were lighter, averaging 57 to 58 pounds per bushel, but those were growing as more fields were cut. Protein reflected the drought stress, with samples averaging between 12% and 14%.
In Reno County, Matt Long, MKC senior location manager, said harvest was kicking off five days earlier than usual for the area (June 13). That was the same for Ford County growers, according to Sam Rucker, Alliance Ag & Grain LLC grain merchandiser, in Spearville, Kan. The wheat is dry, but some operations were waiting for harvest crews that were delayed in Oklahoma.
Over in southeastern Kansas, at Beachner Grain Inc., in Independence, location manager Todd Fienen said harvest has started — but with rains through the month of May, many fields are still drying out. He said he expects growers to be cutting through the Fourth of July.
With 2% of the Kansas wheat crop harvested as of June 12, according to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service’s Weekly Crop Progress and Condition report, time will tell where the average yield, test weight and protein will fall as harvest marches onward. The report noted 31% of the wheat crop was mature as of June 12, ahead of 16% last year and 25% average. Statewide, the agency rated the wheat crop’s condition at 26% good to excellent, 33% fair and 41% poor to very poor.
The 2022 Harvest Report is sponsored by the Kansas Wheat Commission, Kansas Association of Wheat Growers and the Kansas Grain and Feed Association. To follow along with harvest updates on Twitter, use #wheatharvest22. Tag Kansas Wheat at @kansaswheat on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to share your harvest story and photos.
Kansas Wheat contributed to this article.