Agriculture

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.


Alpaca Farm Days set for this weekend

Sundrop Alpacas near Bement will take part in National Alpaca Farm Days on Sept. 24-25. From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., guests can view spinning demonstrations, touch national champion winning fleeces, and pet an alpaca.

Visitors will also be able to view the newest alpaca in the 14-alpaca herd, a baby – cria – named Catalpa.


Community Garden organizers reflect on first year

Those currently the Apple A Day Cafe at Kirby Medical Center in Monticello are likely eating food grown just a few hundred yards away.


Near record crop yields expected

It looks like 2016 will complete a stellar 3-year run for local corn and soybean crops. The annual Topflight Grain Cooperative crop tour last week predicts the area corn crop will average around 223 bushels per acre, up from the 220.1 bpa last year but behind the record 235.2 bpa yields of 2014.


Streambank Field Day July 27

The Piatt County Farm Bureau and Piatt County Soil and Water Conservation District will host a “Streambank Restoration Field Day” from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. July 27. Participants should meet at the Farm Bureau parking lot by 9:15 a.m.


Lavender event this weekend at Twin Silos Farm

Twin Silos Farm near Monticello will offer its first Lavender U-Pick Festival from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 25-26 at the farm, located at 1090 Bucks Pond Road.


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