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Farm Facts

What is That? – Combine Heads

At harvest, farmers use a combine to pick corn and cut soybeans. The combine is the main harvesting machine that powers through the county’s top crops from September through November. On the front of the combine is an attachment known as the head. The head is powered by the PTO (power ...read more

Farmers with Military Service

American farmers are some of the most patriotic citizens. There’s good reason for that – many have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. 11% of U.S. farmers have served or are serving in the military. They are largely male and a full decade older than producers as a whole. They are experienced ...read more

5 Ag Technologies That Pay Off For Consumers

Farmers and food makers are plugging into smarter technology that makes food healthier, safer and more delicious. No matter what kind of food you love to eat, there are many technologies to help farmers and food producers keep you well-fed. Here are five technological advances that might be making a difference ...read more

DeKalb County Ag by the Numbers – Ag Teachers

With over 34,000 students studying agriculture in Illinois, ag teachers are in high demand. In 2020 there were 66 job openings for ag teachers within the state, but only 22 ag education graduates to fill them. This year there are 356 ag education programs throughout Illinois with 452 educators. DeKalb County has 7 ag programs taught by ...read more

What is That? Semi Trucks & Grain Trailers

During the harvest season you will see many semi-trucks and trailers on the road hauling grain to nearby elevators or farms. A semi-truck refers to the actual truck, which has an engine along with a cab. Sometimes it’s also called a semi-tractor. A semi-truck engine has 350 to 600 horsepower. A semi-trailer ...read more

What if Farmers Did Not Use Pesticides?

Farmers use many tools to produce the food that ends up on our plates. Among them are crop protection products, also known as pesticides. Crop protection helps control weeds, pests and diseases that starve food crops of the nutrients, sunlight and water needed to thrive. Pesticide is a general term that covers ...read more

What is That? Seed Signs

As you drive by corn and soybean fields you may see some signs at the edge of the fields. Seed companies and farmers post these signs to promote their particular varieties of corn or soybeans. It’s sort of like having mini billboards in the countryside. Some think that these signs are posted ...read more

Ear Size Matters

The number of kernels per ear of corn is an important contributor to the grain yield potential of a corn plant. Ideal growing conditions and a hybrid’s genetics determine ear size and exceptional yields at harvest. The number of kernel rows multiplied by the number of kernels per row equates to ...read more

What is That? Corn Detasseling

Years ago detasseling corn was a common summer job for teenagers in our county especially since DeKalb was home to DEKALB seed corn and there were several fields of seed corn grown locally. Then, most of the corn tassels were removed by hand. Today, machines remove most of the tassel, the ...read more

History of DeKalb County 4-H Fair Livestock Show

The DeKalb County 4-H Fair Livestock Show has been held at various locations over the years. For many years the 4-H Fair was held in conjunction with the Sycamore Farmer’s Club Jr. Fair and local Granges. The Sycamore Farmer’s Club Jr. Fair ran from 1940-2006. From the early 1930s to the ...read more