Jumbo sunflower highlights local garden

Monticello master gardener Colleen Vaughan was not terribly surprised to see a 10-foot high sunflower grow from an old package of seeds she was given this past spring.

Ag Committee holds session at Farm Progress Show

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, Chairman Mike Conaway (R-Texas), Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), and other members of the House Agriculture Committee and the Illinois Congressional Delegation heard from local farmers and agriculture leaders at the committee’s fifth Farm Bill Listening Session yesterday.

Corn yields expected to drop this fall

Topflight Grain officials are estimating the average area corn yield at 190 bushels per acre this year, but expect a wide variety of figures to appear once farmers begin to harvest. The variance will be due to the wide range of rain totals that occurred this growing season.

Davis to lead Congressional committee meeting at Farm Progress Show

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Taylorville) has announced that he will host House Agriculture Committee Chairman K. Michael Conaway (R-Texas), Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), and other committee members at this year’s Farm Progress Show in Decatur on Aug. 30.

Monticello farmer's market returns

The Monticello Farmer’s Market has returned to the corner of Livingston and State streets. The Sager’s Peaches stand was able to begin attending on June 22.

The Farmer’s Market is held from 3 to 6 p.m. each Thursday.

Monticello FFA member a Section officer

Nick Wolter, a Monticello FFA member, was elected to serve as the 2017-18 Section 17 FFA Reporter on Thursday, April 19. Wolter’s term will begin upon the conclusion of the Illinois FFA State Convention in June. He, and the rest of the Section Officer Team, will dedicate a year of service to 14 area schools.

Forest to Mansion dinner features local food, local organizers

It’s a lot of work, but organizing the Forest to Mansion Dinner at Allerton Park has its perks, according to local chef Ann Swanson.

Like last year when she kept sassafras root in her car.

Cropsmith in running for $1 million prize

Tim Smith was ahead of the curve when he quit his crop science job at the University of Illinois in 2005 and started his own business to advise farmers on more efficient nitrogen application. Since then, farmers have warmed to the services of Farmer City-based Cropsmith, with his two-person business expanding to nine over the past decade.

Zoning variances approved for Topflight

The Monticello Planning and Zoning Board on Feb. 20 recommended approval of a conditional use permit and variance request for Topflight Grain Cooperative during Monday’s meeting. The city council gave final approval a week later to the zoning requests, which will allow the company to build an additional grain bin at their current location in Monticello.

Piatt County again tops state in soybean yields

For the third straight year, Piatt County farmers had the most productive soybean fields in the state, averaging 71.3 bushels per acre for the 2016 harvest. That according to estimates released Feb. 23 from the United States Department of Agriculture.

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