Wheat is being or is ready to be harvested in a good portion of the state, but high temperatures, high humidity and predicted rain showers daily for the next week have the potential to cause problems. Where large amounts of rain fall, getting combines into the field may be difficult. Where fields are passable, grain may be mature but high in moisture. It is important to get wheat out of the field quickly after the kernals have matured to avoid loss of yield, reduced quality and ultimately sprouting in the heads. Combines operate most efficiently and with less kernal damage when grain moisture is between 13-20%. If wheat is harvested much above 14% it needs to be dried relatively quickly to prevent sprouting in storage. Wheat is harder to dry than corn because of the high humidity this time of the year and because it packs tighter than corn thus grain depths in the bin need to shallower or fan speeds/volumes greater. The following links to publications from Purdue University and the University of Missouri may be useful if the current weather conditions persist and problems are encountered.
Zane R. Helsel