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Archive for September, 2016

Heavy rains a mixed blessing for Idaho growers

John O’Connell/Capital Press Arbon Valley, Idaho, grower Jeff Campbell, son of Ken Campbell, plants fall wheat, benefiting from recent moisture.

ARBON VALLEY, Idaho — Recent heavy rainstorms throughout Idaho have stretched the irrigation supply for some growers, following a dry summer, and supplied the necessary soil moisture for dryland farmers to plant fall grains.

The return of moisture to the state has been a mixed blessing for other growers, however, delaying potato harvest and the planting of fall grain in fields coming out of spuds, and damaging some fourth-cutting alfalfa.

Ken Campbell, a dryland farmer in southeastern Idaho’s Arbon Valley, normally likes to plant his fall wheat in late August or early September. This fall, however, he was forced to wait until the end of September to start planting, during a break in the storms that supplied him with enough soil moisture to germinate his fall wheat seeds.

“We have 3 inches of rain here over the last 10 days. It’s the first rains we’ve had since early June,” Campbell said, adding more rain was in the forecast for the weekend. “Unfortunately, we’re still trying to get safflower harvested, and now we’re trying to plant at the same time.”

Before the storms arrived, however, Campbell worried about a mid-October insurance deadline, when he’d be forced to plant, even if the soil remained dry.

“We all felt like we’d probably get (rain), and we did, so I’m glad of it,” Campbell said.

John O’Connell/Capital Press Arbon Valley, Idaho, dryland grower Jeff Campbell, son of Ken Campbell, loads fertilizer into his planter Sept. 27 before planting fall grain. He benefited from recent rainfall that restored his soil moisture.

Sid Cellan, a dryland grower in Caribou County, said grain harvest and fall grain planting are mostly complete in his area — though the majority of the barley has remained in farm storages as the malting companies are still working through last year’s crop.

Cellan still has 50 acres of barley left to harvest but emphasized, “I don’t care if I get it in or not. It’s much-needed moisture.”

His region received 2.7 inches of moisture within the span of a week, and recently planted fall wheat has already begun to sprout. He said the moisture has also “mellowed” the soil and made his fall tillage much easier.

“There was some uncertainty at planting, but now we’ve got plenty of rain to get the grain up,” Cellan said.

Steve Howser, general manager with Aberdeen Springfield Canal Co., ran out of water and had to shut off his canal system a few weeks early. The recent rains have brought his natural flow water rights back in priority, and he’s reopened his gates, hoping to resume deliveries for sugar beet growers who moisten fields before harvesting. He said some growers have already started harvesting beets along the canal, benefiting from the rain.

“It’ll be very comforting if I can have water in the canal for them if they need it,” Howser said.

For other growers, the timing made the rainfall mostly a nuisance. According to a USDA crop progress report for the week ending Sept. 25, moisture damaged cut beans and alfalfa in Jerome and Twin Falls counties.

Caribou County potato farmers have had their spud harvests delayed by more than a week already, said Grace seed grower Marc Gibbs. Gibbs must harvest spuds before he can plant fall wheat in the same fields and noted his fall grain yields tend to drop by 10 to 15 percent when he plants after Oct. 10.

“The further we get behind we see reduced yields in this valley,” Gibbs said. “We can’t handle a lot more storms.”

John O’Connell

Published on September 28, 2016 10:30AM on the Capital Press

Link to the story:

Lois Anne Stewart – Obituary

Lois Anne Stewart, 76, passed away September 17, 2016 at home and in the company of her loving family. She was born in Pocatello, May 15, 1940, the second of three children born to Lewis Walter Cox and Viella (Ella) Gribble Cox. Her siblings were an older brother, James (Jim) and a younger sister, Lorna.

Lois Anne grew up on a small acreage located at 2445 South 2nd Ave. where her parents raised their own beef, a milk cow, lambs, chickens, cats and dogs; they also maintained a large vegetable garden, a raspberry patch, and a flower garden. When she later married a farmer—rancher, she felt right at home in that environment.

Her earlier days centered around grade school at Lincoln Elementary, attending Primary for children at the LDS 12th Ward, and Franklin Jr. High School. She was active in 4-H and learned to cook and sew, winning ribbons at the fair. She also took ballet and tap dance lessons; she then switched to piano lessons at which she excelled. Lois Anne was called to play the piano and organ at Church. During her teen years she joined a singing group of nine girls called the Triple-Trio for which she accompanied on the piano. They performed at Church meetings, funerals, and at Primary General Conference in Salt Lake City. She also joined an all-girls dance group and went to Salt Lake City and danced with a multitude of girls from many different wards in the Church.

As a senior at Pocatello High School, Lois Anne earned money by working evenings as a nurses’ aide at the old Saint Anthony Hospital. While working there she met her future husband, Gene Alden Stewart, who was visiting his father at the hospital. Lois Anne and Gene continued dating and writing each other for the next two years as she attended ISU, majoring in elementary education, and he advanced his agricultural studies at the U of I. They were married on June 25, 1960 in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho, and settled down in Gene’s ranch home in Arbon Valley, Idaho. Their marriage was later solemnized in the LDS Idaho Falls Temple. Their union has been blessed with 5 children, 14 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Another great-grandchild will be born soon which will make the count 14 great-grandchildren.

In 1964 Lois Anne started teaching the lower grades at Arbon Elementary School and continued for eight years. She also drove the Arbon School Bus for Gene when he was too busy with the farm work to drive the bus. In summer months, she assisted Gene with work on the farm, including driving a crawler tractor, hay stacker, and grain truck. As there was no phone service at the ranch home, her brother taught her to operate a ham amateur radio and she became a certified ham radio operator so she could stay in touch with her family. She also created the TOPS Club in Arbon for those wanting to lose weight.

In 1969 she was nominated and received an award as an “Outstanding Young Woman of America” by the Outstanding Americans Foundation. This national foundation recognizes one young woman from each state every year for her outstanding accomplishment in community service, in religious and political activities, and in professional endeavors.

Lois Anne also received a Certificate of Honor as “Farm Woman of the Year” from Farm Wife News in recognition of her dedication, talent, enthusiasm, and personal interest in rural living.

In 1973 they built a home in Pocatello where Lois Anne operated an in-home daycare and preschool for eight years. She enjoyed teaching and loved the children in her care. She spent later years enjoying gardening, growing flowers, toll painting, dutch oven cooking, knitting, crocheting, visiting with grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She also loved her two Shih Tzu dogs named Buffy and Pawco.

She loved having sleep-over parties with the grandchildren where they would play games, laugh and giggle. The next day she would take them to McDonald’s for a Happy Meal. She would order one also and give her toy to her grandchild so they could have two toys. She adored and cherished her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren.

Lois Anne was active in the LDS Church from an early age and served in many callings on the branch, ward, stake and temple level, including Pianist and Organist, Primary Teacher, Activity Days Teacher for young girls, Stake Relief Society Counselor, Stake Primary President, and Initiatory Temple Worker. She and Gene also served a two-year LDS Service Mission in the 1st Ward Pocatello Stake. She was frequently requested to play the organ at various funeral services of friends and neighbors.

Lois Anne is survived by her sister, Lorna (Michael) Bartlett (McCammon); her husband, Gene Stewart (Pocatello); their children, Gregory (Hanna) Stewart, (Spokane); Jeffrey (Sheri) Stewart, (Arbon); Vickie (Joe) Christensen, (Pocatello), Amy K. Stewart, (Salt Lake City); Jeremy (Amy Lynne) Stewart, (Tooele), 13 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, James (Jim) Walter Cox; and one grandson, Michael Greg Stewart.

She will be greatly missed until we can all once again gather as an eternal family in paradise.

A viewing will be held on Friday, September 23, 2016 from 6-8 pm at Colonial Funeral Home, 2005 S. 4th Ave. Pocatello, ID.

Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 11 am at the Pocatello Stake Building, 655 S. Grant Ave. Pocatello, ID, with a viewing from 10-10:45 am prior.

Burial will follow at Restlawn Memorial Gardens, 2864 S. 5th Ave. Pocatello, ID.

CPR Class

CPR Class
Sat. Oct 1st
9:00am – 2:00pm

Anyone interested in certifying please contact Debbie Curry at 335-2373 or 335-2197. You can also just send an e-mail to

School Board Agenda and Expenses

Arbon Valley Fun Run (This Saturday!)

Please join us for a


We are continuing to raise money for new playground equipment at Arbon Elementary, as it is so expensive!

Come take in the exhilarating view of the valley and help us reach our new goal!


Date: Saturday, September 24 (this Saturday!)

Distance: 2.5k, 5k, and 10k (Run/Walk)

Pre-register: 8:30am

Race begins: 9:00am

Donation: $5 Kids, $10 Adults (Additional donations welcome!)

Questions: Contact Jamie Evans 208-269-0370