Dry edible bean yields down in the Nebraska Panhandle, Wyoming | TheFencePost.com

Dry edible bean yields down in the Nebraska Panhandle, Wyoming

Gary Stone
Nebraska Extension Educator
Another load of great northern beans from a field in Scotts Bluff County, Nebraska, is dumped from a combine to a semi truck to go to the processor, eventually to help feed the world.
Photo by Gary Stone

Aided by favorable weather, most dry edible bean growers in the Nebraska Panhandle and eastern Wyoming should complete harvest by the first week in October.

Harvest has been going on since the first week in September, boosted by warm days to dry the bean windrows and little wind and precipitation.

Yield reports from growers have been highly variable, but many growers in both states in the North Platte Valley are experiencing lower yields this season. Some of the yield reduction can be explained by several late hail storms and the collapse of the Goshen/Gering-Fort Laramie irrigation canal tunnel. But in areas that had sufficient moisture and no hail, yields are also down. Previous average yields were about 2,400 to 2,800 pounds per acre, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics. This season many growers are reporting yields of approximately 1,600 to 2,000 pounds per acre.

John Thomas, Nebraska Extension crops educator, continues to work with growers with direct harvest of dry beans with on-farm research plots across the Panhandle. Thomas will hold grower meetings later this winter to present his on-farm research findings.