Heavy rains affecting area farms

CHAMPAIGN — Champaign County farmers continue to contend with ponding in fields, but in many cases, their situation isn’t as bad as that of other areas.

Tboro farmer tilling land that will benefit United Way

CHAMPAIGN — It may never be home to a new high school, as originally planned, but 40 acres of fertile farmland the Champaign school district paid $1.6 million for will soon see some activity — growing soybeans.

Dewey Bank hosts Earth Partners tour

DEWEY — Dewey Bank recently hosted the Earth Partners 2015 coffee shop tour.

The event included a lunch provided by L.A. Gourmet.

Earth Partners’ goals are achieved through the agriculture literacy/agriculture-in-the-classroom program sponsored by Earth Partners’ contributors and the Champaign County Farm Bureau Foundation.

RTHS FFA visits Springfield, learns about legislative process

SPRINGFIELD — Five members of the Rantoul FFA chapter participated in the 2015 Agriculture Legislative Awareness Day in Springfield  

More than 1,000 FFA members, advisors and supporters of agriculture education flooded Springfield for the event.

Armstrong chapter celebrating National FFA Week

ARMSTRONG — The Armstrong Township High School FFA chapter will participate in National FFA Week Feb. 23-28.

This year’s theme is “Go All Out.” The FFA members have a week of activities planned.

On Monday, students had Blue and Gold Day to represent the colors of the FFA, and senior members were auctioned off to do work for senior scholarships.

Low fuel prices good for farmers through higher ethanol use

DEWEY — Good news at the gas pump is good news to farmers as well.

Dr. Darrel Good told those attending the Dewey Bank Annual Farm Seminar Wednesday that government projections forecast an increase of 2-3 percent in fuel use among U.S. drivers this year. That would mean more corn-based ethanol consumption.

PBL FFA Farm Toy Show set Feb. 14

PAXTON — The Paxton-Buckley-Loda FFA chapter’s 27th annual Farm Toy Show is scheduled for 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14, at PBL High School in Paxton.

In addition to a gym full of vendors selling miniature replicas of farm machinery, there will be a silent auction, door prizes, a children’s pedal tractor pull and concessions.

Rantoul FFA receives $2,500 grant to fight hunger

RANTOUL — Earlier this year, the Rantoul FFA received a $2,500 grant to help them fight hunger in Champaign County through the National FFA Organization’s Feeding Our World- Starting at Home initiative.

As part of the initiative, the FFA Food For All program helps FFA members understand the causes and effects of hunger and encourages them to take action in their communities.

Harvest could be a bin buster in area

Area farmers have been bringing in bin-busting crops of corn and soybeans in the Rantoul area — so much so that they might break records.

Maynard Birkey, customer service representative for Premier Cooperative, Dewey, said “there are some guys who have been rolling their eyes saying they can’t believe it.”

And beans might be doing even better than corn.

Mild summer was good for growing gardens as well

CHAMPAIGN — This year’s mild growing season with plenty of rain and moderate temperatures wasn’t just a boon to area corn and soybean crops. It also benefitted area flower and vegetable gardens.

At least those plants that don’t like hot, humid weather.

Dianne Noland, a horticulture lecturer at the University of Illinois, said the weather allowed her flowers to thrive longer.

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