David Howell brings in grain from Delaware County fields during the first full week of harvest for his operation.
David Howell brings in grain from Delaware County fields during the first full week of harvest for his operation.
MIDDLETON, Ind. — With cooler temperatures and changing leaves, it certainly feels like harvest time in Indiana.

Some farmers across the state have begun bringing in their crops. After a season full of highs and lows, the time for farmers to reap the benefits of their hard work has arrived.

David Howell, a farmer from Middleton, started harvesting corn at the end of September. He said harvest so far is going smoothly.

“We had quite a bit of early-delivery premium, and we wanted to take advantage of that,” said Howell, who farms land in several counties in north-central Indiana. “The quality is quite good.

“The yield is good, but not as good as it could be. The kernels are much smaller than they normally would have been. It looks good, but it’s a little bit of a disappointment compared to what it could be because of the shortage of rainfall in August.”

According to Howell, the weather during the first week of harvest was ideal.

It is early in the harvest process, but everything is going well so far.

“We had I think the best potential crop that I’d ever had until there in August when we had a dry spell, so it’s kind of a letdown,” Howell said.

In spite of the letdown, he expects continued high quality throughout the season.

Ron Hudson, a farmer in Patoka, had a similar harvest story to tell.

“We started harvesting corn about three weeks ago, and we’re still working on it,” he explained. “It looks well above normal — about 20 to 30 bushels above normal. We’re at above 200 bushels here.

“Moisture dried down to about 23 now. It started about 31- or 32-percent moisture. Soybeans look like they are very good, above normal. Most guys in the area have not started beans yet. A lot will be harvested here in the next two weeks.”

Hudson said there have been numerous challenges throughout the growing season. The main obstacle was a strong thunderstorm that came through Labor Day weekend.

“It blew about 300 acres of our corn down,” Hudson said. “Along with that, you have higher fuel, labor and repair costs. It makes for a bad situation.”

On the bright side, Hudson, like Howell, agreed that weather should be ideal for harvest.

“That’s the encouraging side of it,” he said.