HUTCHINSON — After years of being considered a risk not worth taking, western Kansas farmers are planting more acres of dryland corn.
The Kansas Agricultural Statistics Service says farmers in southwest Kansas planted 149,000 acres of dryland corn in 2016 up 133 percent from 2015. West-central Kansas was up 59 percent in that time period. The Hutchinson News reports figures aren’t available for this year’s acreage of the corn, which is not irrigated by water sources like the Ogallala aquifer.
Timely rains and full underground moisture have contributed to the increase.
The increase in corn and soybean acres across the state means fewer acres of wheat and sorghum.
As the fall harvest season continues, several grain elevators are seeing less sorghum as farmers look for alternatives in a sluggish agriculture economy.