Time is on their side: Farmers' spring planting unfazed by Mother Nature

Last week's fleeting moment of spring followed by Monday's light dusting of snow left just about every East Central Illinoisan bitter. But far more eager for warmer weather is the central Illinois farmer.

"This was our intended start day to plant corn," said Brian Anderson, a retired vice president of the former Peoples State Bank of Mansfield, now First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust.

Envisioning spring: Area garden centers prepare for seasonal planting

Spring has sprung, at least in the calendrical sense of the phrase. Unfazed by Mother Nature's final wintery blast last weekend, area garden centers marched on with their visions for spring. Inside the warm greenhouses, gardeners kept a watchful eye on their seedlings and plug plants, individual plants in the beginning stages of growth that will later be transplanted.

Combining their efforts

Seasonal workers aren't just valuable for retail stores during the holiday shopping blitz.

They are also imperative for farmers during the harvest season, which started in Champaign County several weeks ago.

For much of the year, farming can be a solo pursuit for a majority of the operators.

Mr. Fix-It tag no longer applies

For generations, farmers have also been known as the consummate handymen.

If there was an equipment breakdown, they'd fix it up and return to the fields as quickly as possible,

Modern technology has helped that image fade into oblivion.

Sangamon River checkup

A small group of volunteers gathered under the Hazen Bridge for a mussel survey last Saturday.

For nearly three hours, they combed the Sangamon River.

The Upper Sangamon River Conservancy (USRC) is a group that runs the mussel survey every year.

Company offers fresh produce year-round


For The Mahomet Citizen

Two long-time friends and Mahomet business owners have teamed up to start a new way of farming.

Located on the north side of Bellflower, Central Illinois Aquaponics Co. is providing fresh vegetables year-round.

Mahomet's Marsh named ag leader

As a teenager, Mahomet IGA owner Brooks Marsh decided not to pursue farming and ranching—the family business—as a career.

When he announced to his father that he planned to go to college, he recalled the older man saying, “What, you’re not going to work on the farm?”

But he hasn’t forgotten his roots.

Farm Leader Banquet 2013

News-Gazette Farm Leader of the Year Jack Murray was honored at a banquet at the Hilton Garden Inn in Champaign on Tuesday, March 26, 2013.


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