Precipitation puts dry bean harvest behind schedule | TheFencePost.com

Precipitation puts dry bean harvest behind schedule

Gary Stone
UNL Extension Educator

A grower near Scottsbluff, Neb., takes advantage of clear weather Sept. 30 to harvest a field of dry edible beans, using a Picket combine, specifically designed to harvest dry beans. There was little or no wind, and the dust hung in the air throughout the field.

Dry bean harvest in the Panhandle is going slow this season

Generally, dry bean harvest is completed by the end of September. Precipitation events over the last several weeks have slowed harvest and brought it to a standstill.

Typically, dry beans are undercut and windrowed to dry in the field prior to combining them. John Thomas, Nebraska Extension educator, Box Butte County, is working with growers on direct harvest methods. This would eliminate the undercutting and windrowing.

If a significant precipitation event occurs, then windrows have to dry in the field that much longer. That is the case this season. Saturday, Sept. 30, was the first good day for growers to get into the field and harvest dry beans that had been cut. Panhandle extension was in the field also, getting a portion of the dry bean variety trial combined.

Not all growers were able to take advantage of the nice day and get all of their beans combined, and as of Oct. 6, many beans remain as windrows in the field. And there are still a number of acres of dry beans that have to be cut and windrowed.

Rain and snow fell Sunday night into Monday, but this week's forecast called for several days of dry weather.

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