CHAMPAIGN – Rural King plans to open a store in Champaign, taking over the space formerly occupied by Wal-Mart and Steve & Barry's. The farm supply retailer has slated an Oct. 1 opening for the store at 913 W. Marketview Drive, said Matt Garrison, regional manager for the Mattoon-based chain.
CHAMPAIGN – The economics of corn-based ethanol aren't as bright as they were a few years ago, but the fuel still needs to be part of America's energy portfolio, a Monsanto Co. executive says.
"We were living in a pretty sweet spot a couple years ago," Martha Schlicher told about 70 people attending an "Agri-Energy" conference at Parkland College on Tuesday.
CHAMPAIGN – Don't give up on America's ash trees yet.
Even though an imported beetle poses grave danger to them, scientists are exploring solutions that, in time, may slow or stop the ravaging of the trees.
PENFIELD – Up to 8,000 people are expected to attend this year's Historic Farm Days July 9-12 in Penfield.
The world's largest tractor and the Allis-Chalmers machinery line will be among the featured attractions.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture is encouraging farmers to recycle their empty agrichemical containers.
The department announced last week a recycling program for the containers that begins later this summer. Designated sites across the state will collect the containers and grind them into small plastic chips used to make shipping pallets, fence posts, drainage tubing, plastic lumber and other products.
CLINTON LAKE – A drive to Clinton Lake might be in order if you'd like to see American bald eagles soaring over the local landscape.
There's a nest of the eagles with three little ones – called eaglets – near the Illinois Power Employee Recreation Area.
Area farmers are waiting for the ground to dry and warm up a bit before they start their tractor engines and begin the 2009 planting season.
A cool, rainy start to last week was followed by warmer, drier weather. But the weekend's expected rains could also put a damper on any possible activity in the near future.
CHAMPAIGN – For folks who live in central Illinois, a weeklong "agricultural experience" in the Prairie State may not have quite the allure of leisurely days on tropical beaches or the quiet beauty of the mountains.
But it apparently does to some Europeans and South Americans who have streamed to Illinois to enjoy cornfields, casinos and river cruises.
The oldest building on the University of Illinois campus is staying put.
The University of Illinois Board of Trustees decided on Wednesday that the 1870 Mumford House should not move from its original location off Lorado Taft Drive on the South Quad to the South Farms.
Spring flooding and a late planting season didn't keep three area counties from being among the state leaders in soybean and corn production for 2008.