Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Welcome New Field Agronomists

Two new Field Agronomists, Chris Brown and Dana Harder, joined the Burrus team this past August. Field Agronomist responsibilities include agronomic training of the sales staff, customer service for Burrus growers across our selling footprint, and product testing and research.

Chase, Tina, Cade & Chris Brown.
Chris Brown joins the team with a solid agronomic background in both product development and sales. In addition, Chris holds a Certified Crop Advisor license. A Southern Illinois University-Carbondale graduate, Chris now resides in Lacon, IL with his wife Tina, and their two children Chase and Cade. Chris serves the northeast region of our selling footprint.



Candi & Dana Harder with son Owen and daughters Madison & Cambell.

Dana Harder brings both practical and research experience to Burrus Seed. Dana especially enjoys helping growers set up and analyze their own on-farm testing. After graduating from the University of Missouri with a bachelor's degree, Dana received a master's from Michigan State University. Edina, MO is home for Dana, his wife Candi, and their three children Owen, Madison, and Cambell. Dana serves growers in southern Illinois and Missouri. 

We are pleased to add such well-respected agronomists who possess hands-on experience to the Burrus team. Please feel free to contact them with your corn and soybean growing questions.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

A Year in Review by Todd Burrus

Tribute page to Tom in 2017 Burrus Harvest Report
Last year's Harvest Report was a tribute to my brother, Tom. It is easy for me to look back and smile as I think about the times Tom and I enjoyed in our 50 years of working together. Tom was my supervisor my first day of detasselling. It is also easy to reflect back on the whirlwind of the last year and appreciate all that we have learned. 

First, I recall sitting down with family members making up our ownership team a week after Tom passed. We wrote on the whiteboard everything we knew he did. As with any family operation, we redistributed the load. Five of us each took part of the list. I think I can speak for all of us when I say, Tom always had a lot going on and we all miss him! He really did an amazing job of helping us to be prepared.

Second, he truly had his house in order. This fact has made it significantly easier on his family. I am told a low percentage of people have an estate plan and have communicated their plan with those close to them. Do your family and yourself a favor, get a plan!

Tim Greene stepped us as President. I can see growth in him and in his confidence to lead. Tim worked side-by-side with Tom for 21 years and learned well. I am proud to be a source of encouragement to him.

This spring helped affirm the value of seed quality and PowerShield® seed treatment. It was one of the lowest replant seasons ever. Growers continue to enjoy the benefits. Post-emerge spray season affirmed off-target chemical drift. It is a continued concern. We are pleased that we not only offer choice but can truly help growers consider all the factors necessary to make good decisions.

Reviewing interview footage with the RFD-TV video team
A few days of heat during pollination hurt a few of our seed fields. I suspect it also helped create some surprises for customers. This is continued confirmation that planting a package of Burrus products provides the best tool to manage future weather patterns. Martha thinks I have been a broken record on this topic for at least 40 years and she has not even turned 40 yet!

The opportunity to tell the Burrus story on RFD-TV was an unexpected lift. It was a positive message about the value of independent seed companies. It also provided a chance to see and hear what sets Burrus apart. 

The announcement of the DONMARIO™ brand was another big step. This allows us to introduce a global source of soybean genetics to the American farmer. More importantly, it connects two family seed businesses with similar values and goals. Customer reaction has been very positive as they search for a new source that is founded on genetics and not on traits. 

Dave Hughes, Martha Krohe, Todd Burrus, Ignacio Bartolome, & Tim Greene

The Burrus reputation for seed quality remains. Kevin Burrus has put another high-quality seed crop in the bin. Listening to Burrus harvest successes has been very encouraging. It has also been a privilege to walk alongside the customers who have experienced weather adversity. Knowing your seed supplier knows and cares has value!

Growers put their trust in us, our information, and our products. We take that responsibility seriously. We look forward to serving you for many years to come!

This article was originally printed in the 2018 Burrus Harvest Report.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Meet Our 2018 Summer Interns

Another growing season is drawing to a close, and it's time to recognize and thank our outstanding 2018 summer interns! Burrus Seed representatives attend college career fairs across our footprint each fall seeking interns for the following summer. We have been lucky to always have a large pool of students interested in joining our team to learn while traveling with sales team members, calling on customers, and erecting field signs.

We are now accepting applications for our 2019 summer internships and will be attending several college career fairs across our footprint this fall. If you are interested in an internship with Burrus Seed, visit our website or email us at burrus.seed@burrusseed.com.

2018 Burrus Seed Summer Interns


Zach Edwards
Zach is from Godfrey, IL and will be returning to Southern Illinois University Carbondale in the fall as a senior. Zach is pursuing a dual major in Agribusiness Economics and Crop, Soil & Environmental Management. With these degrees, Zach hopes for a  future career in seed or crop protection sales. Zach's hobbies include hunting and being an active member of Farm House fraternity.





Mason Gardner
Mason is from Mendon, MO and will be a senior this fall at Northwest Missouri State University. Mason's experiences from growing up on his family's farm with row crops and cattle prepared him well for this summer. Mason is working towards a double major in Ag Business and Agronomy. In his free time, Mason enjoys track and field, hunting, fishing, and farming.





Wade Prough
Wade is from Carrollton, IL and was our Agronomy Intern this summer, working with our agronomic research team. Wade will be a junior at Western Illinois University in the fall and is pursuing a major in Ag Science with a minor in Agronomy. When he's not in a field, Wade's hobbies include old cars, motorcycles, and semis. 




Nicholas Simpson
Nicholas is from Lanark, IL and spent the summer working alongside the Hughes sales team members. This fall, Nicholas will be a senior at the University of Wisconsin Platteville. Nicholas is pursuing a major in Soil and Crop Science with an Ag Business minor. Nicholas stays busy in his free time being a volunteer firefighter, as well as hunting, fishing, boating and snowmobiling.




Aaron Slack
Aaron is from Paxton, IL and will be a senior this year at the University of Illinois. Aaron's major is Agriculture Science Education and he hopes to one day be an ag teacher. A background of FFA, 4-H, and working on the family farm prepared Aaron for his summer with the Burrus team. Aaron's hobbies include hunting, guiding hunts with his yellow lab, golfing, and fishing.  





Justen Woods
Justen is from Ipava, IL and assisted Pete George's sales team in Territory B this summer. Justen will be starting his senior year at Western Illinois University in the fall with a major in Ag Science. Justen enjoys the outdoors spending his free time farming, working with cattle, hunting, fishing, and riding four-wheelers.



Our sales team could not get through the growing season without help from our interns, and we are all grateful for this year's group. We wish them all the best on their future plans and hope they all find rewarding careers one day in the ag industry.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Celebrating Our Sales Team

The Burrus Seed sales team recently held their annual sales season kick-off meeting. The group met in Branson, Missouri for a weekend of training, discussion, collaboration and fun. Following an afternoon of meetings introducing and reviewing various topics, the sales team, management team, and their families met for a dinner and awards banquet.

The awards portion of the evening is always looked forward to, where the hard work put in over the past year is recognized and admired. We are proud of the efforts our staff put forth each day to advance the success and profitability of our growers.

Two new awards were introduced this year. The Burrus Seed Breakout Performer of the Year recognizes the sales team member who focuses on expanding their business. The 2018 Breakout Performer of the Year was awarded to Colby Reilson of Highland, IL. 


2018 Burrus Seed Breakout Performer of the Year Colby Reilson and Tim Greene

In memory of Tom Burrus, a new award was introduced to recognize the team member who demonstrates outstanding effort to help the customers and company win. Jordan Watson of Shelbina, MO was awarded the 2018 Tom Burrus Award. A perpetual plaque listing annual winners of the award will be on display in the Jacksonville office.

2018 Tom Burrus Award recipient Jordan Watson with (left to right) Tim Greene, wife Maggie Watson, Lori Greene and Marcy Burrus

We have an outstanding sales team and enjoyed the time spent together as a group. Here's to the start of a successful new sales season! 

Friday, May 4, 2018

Percent Corn and Soybeans Planted in Burrus Footprint - 5/4/18


It is amazing how much planting can get done in a week; however, we still have some more work to accomplish, especially with soybeans.  About half of the Burrus territory appears to be finished or very, close to being done with corn planting.  Soybeans appear to only be about half planted.  This recent rain gave most, but not all of the Burrus footprint, a rest. Many are starting to be able to row corn and soybeans this week.  No worries as of yet, we still have time to finish planting before mid-May without losing yield potential.  The planting date only accounts for about 11 percent of total yield potential of corn.

Some have commented recently that the April 21st planted corn (and soybeans) emerged quicker than corn planted on April 13th.  This has everything to do with Growing degree days (GDDs) or heat units.  It takes approximately 100-120 GDD's for corn to emerge and soybeans can emerge with 90 GDD's.  The 8 days between the April 13th and April 21st planting date only differed around 50 GDD's in Springfield IL and Chillicothe, MO.  In DeKalb, IL, there was only around 10 GDD difference!  Sorry, Southern Illinois, I was not able to find a good example of total recorded GDD's for you.

Planting date GDDs to date 8 day Difference
Springfield, IL 4/13/2018 224  
  4/21/2018 176 48
Chillicothe, MO 4/13/2018 221  
  4/21/2018 177 44
DeKalb, IL 4/13/2018 150  
  4/21/2018 139 11

Percent corn planted as of 5/4/18

Percent soybeans planted as of 5/4/18


Friday, April 27, 2018

Percent Planting Completed in the Burrus Territory - 4/27/18


We recently polled the Burrus Account Managers and had them give us their best estimate of percent planting of corn that has been completed in the Burrus territory.  Below, you can see of those that reported, the highest percent of planting appears to be in the west.  This area, of course has been a bit warmer, but also missed some rains, which allowed for a broader planting window.  On the other hand, planting has just begun in the last couple of days to the north.  Many are also still concerned about the possible freeze warning over the weekend, especially as you move north.  There could be a lot of field work completed between now and the middle of next week, when rain is in the forecast.   
Map created by Michelle Sandman
As for percent soybeans planted, here what was reported:
Randy McCaskill:  25%
Ross Brockhouse:  20%
Riley Young:  10%
Corey Rimbey: 10%
Ted Ballard:  10%
Zach Whitehille:  10%
Jim Allen:  5%
Colby Reilson:  5%
Quinn Moller:  5%
Erin Holbert:  5%
Joe Fletcher:  5%
Mathias Hoffman:  5%
Brian Bredeson:  5%
Brent Angelo:  5%
Jeff Hyde:  5%
Donny Marnin:  5%
Jordan Watson:  5%
Ross Kleinsteiber:  5%
Rick Urish:  5%
Rob Church:  5%
Jeff Seckler:  1%
Brad Kufalk:  1%

Be safe out there! 
Stephanie and Jamie


Saturday, April 14, 2018

Prepping for #Plant18 Success

Every year, growers across the country begin preparing for planting season. We’re all familiar with the usual pre-plant chores. However, this article isn't meant to discuss things such as soil preparation or fertility.  No, the purpose of this article is to address the essential preparation of your equipment and technology that every grower needs prior to dropping the planter down in a field.

This time of year, everyone is anxious to get started planting and the recent weather pattern hasn’t helped relieve this anxiety. Instead, the energy just builds until everyone is about to come unglued. But all this pent-up energy can quickly turn to frustration if you end up experiencing problems with your equipment or discover too late that your precision data is not ready.

That’s why it’s always important to plan for success by ensuring your equipment and precision data are ready well in advance of planting season. This is the best way to guarantee success when it is time to put the seed in the ground. You’ve got too much at risk to not take the steps necessary to get this #Plant18 right. Here are some thoughts for you as you prepare for planting:

1. First and foremost, get yourself and your operation organized. Prioritize tasks and identify ones with which you need to enlist help on. If you have tasks that need others' assistance, be sure to get them set up as soon as possible.  If you need their help, it’s a good bet that others do too. So, don’t wait to the last minute.

2. Ensure you have a properly leveled toolbar - it's essential to the function of your row units.

3. Differences in soil as you move across a field make checking your down pressure imperative. This is of course something that isn’t set-it and forget-it. You should evaluate your down pressure all planting season, field by field to ensure proper seed placement.

4. Check and adjust your seeding depth.  Every year, you should make a zero adjustment to your press wheels.

5. Ensure your row cleaners are set properly. Remember, their purpose is to remove trash and residue from the front of the row unit. 

6. To ensure optimum seed-to-soil contact is obtained, check and adjust your seed firmers and see that close wheels are aligned behind the row unit properly. 

7. Check that your starter or two-by-two pumps are in working order. 

8. Don’t forget to make sure that your field data is loaded and ready to go on your monitor.

9. Verify all these adjustments are at the speed you normally plant. Varying planting speed can adversely impact your hard work. Doing this will ensure consistency in your planting.

10. Lastly, pay attention to soil conditions. 

After planting is completed, it’s important to validate that your equipment performed as you had expected.  Monitor crop progress throughout the year and document your findings to ensure you met prescription, planning and profit objectives.  With the uncertainty of today’s market, you need to extract every drop of value from every acre and every input. Managing each acre independently is imperative to your operation's success. Capturing data on soil type, soil texture, fertility, soil moisture, planting conditions, populations, product placement and yield history are all integral pieces of the puzzle that is ROI. Your Burrus team is here to partner with you to ensure that you achieve success year after year and build profitable operations for generations to come.

Troy Horton
Burrus Seed Precision Planting Specialist