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Hot, dry fall weather forcing farmers to harvest early to adapt

Posted at 3:33 PM, Oct 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-01 17:42:58-04

CROSBY TWP., Ohio — With high temperatures breaking records late into the year, farmers are really feeling the heat as they're forced to harvest crops early in order to save them.

Dennis Heyob, owner of Heyob Farms in Crosby Township, is working to harvest his soybeans now -- on Oct. 1.

"We'll be done harvesting soybeans tomorrow and we've never harvested soybeans this early," he said.

This time of the year, Heyob said he's used to seeing at least two inches of much-needed rain that helps keep the crop growing into the fall. But this year, that's not the case, and he and his brother are forced to harvest early.

After a wet spring season that delayed planting times for many farmers across the Midwest, this hot, dry fall has been extra painful.

"We got some planted early before the rains hit," said Heyob. "Some of the rain water went over the young soybean plants and that dwarfed their growth."

Heyob said he and his brother feel the planting season was stunted on both ends, from the heavy spring rains that prevented early planting and stunted plants that were in the ground, to the dry, hot fall that's forcing him to harvest smaller plants earlier.