North Dakota sunflower harvest well ahead of last year

Published: Nov. 4, 2020 at 12:32 PM CST
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MOTT, N.D. - North Dakota’s sunflower harvest is well ahead of schedule.

The USDA reports 69% of the state’s crop harvested; that compares to just 21%t at this time a year ago and 54% average.

For one Mott producer, this year’s sunflower crop is shaping up to be one of the best he’s ever had.

Josh Greff is pretty happy about this year’s sunflower crop.

“Sunflowers are doing really well,” said Greff.

He planted about a thousand acres this year. He’s got less than 300 acres left to combine. Greff hopes to finish by the end of the week. It’s a big change from a year ago, when snow kept the combines out of the fields.

“It’s a lot nicer weather,” Greff said. “We hadn’t even started last year at this time.”

And so far, yields and test weights are good and this sunflower crop might be the best crop he harvests this year.

“Our flowers are producing some of the best yields we’ve ever had. We’ll make decent money on them,” said Greff.

What makes those yields even more impressive is that much of Greff’s land suffered a drought this year. He says in all, he’s recorded only about eight inches of moisture all year. In a normal year, they’d have around 15 inches of moisture. Making this sunflower harvest a bright spot in an otherwise not so great year.

Once Greff finishes the sunflower harvest, they’ve got one last field of corn to combine. He hopes to put the combines away for the year by the end of this week.

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