Dry Bean Harvest in the Nebraska Panhandle

Dry bean harvest
Dry bean harvest in the Nebraska Panhandle using a conventional combine. (Photo by Gary Stone)

Dry Bean Harvest in the Nebraska Panhandle

Dry bean harvest in the Nebraska Panhandle and eastern Wyoming is taking longer than usual this season due to extended planting this spring by growers. Warm temperatures combined with more windy days this summer contributed to less pods setting on the plants resulting in lower-than-average yields. Hail was a factor for growers but was not widespread. 

The Pathfinder Canal breach during the irrigation season was also a factor for growers on the north side of the North Platte River (see the article "Pathfinder Canal Break on July 1, 2022"). Dry bean harvest this season should be completed within the next several weeks.

Overall yields this growing season is around 39 bushels per acre, slightly down from previous years. There were approximately 107,000 acres of dry beans harvested in Nebraska this season.

Dry bean harvest with Pickett
Figure 1. Dry bean harvest in the Panhandle using a Pickett dry bean specialty combine. (Photo by Gary Stone)
Dry bean harvest with flex-head
Figure 2. Direct harvest of dry beans using a flex-head and combine. (Photo by Gary Stone)

Nebraska is number one in the nation in Great Northern dry bean production and number two in pinto and light red kidney dry bean production. Dry edible beans are a major source of protein, vitamins and minerals, and realize a $158.4 million impact to the state’s economy.

John Thomas, Nebraska Extension educator, will present results on the 2022 dry bean on-farm research conducted in the Panhandle on Feb. 15, 2023, at the Knight Museum, Alliance, Nebraska. 

More information on dry edible beans can be found at the Nebraska Dry Bean Commission.

Online Master of Science in Agronomy

With a focus on industry applications and research, the online program is designed with maximum flexibility for today's working professionals.

A field of corn.