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planter in the field Kyle Stackhouse

Planting patience needed: It’s drying, but not dry enough

Though we are at the end of our typical start window, our planters will sit in the shed a few more days.

For the last several days, farmers in this area of northern Indiana have been hunting and pecking trying to get some work done. For us we didn’t do a lot until Wednesday. We had put in orders to have the first batch of fields sprayed and fertilized. I will check some more fields today so we can confirm custom work for Friday.

Hopefully we can get a few more days in before the next rain.

Though field work has started plowing ahead, it still isn’t that dry. It’s warm, but not warm enough. You will find some clay knobs on the hillsides that are still seepy. Areas by tree lines and woods may still be holding water. Work is done excluding those known habitual areas. Every year starts like this, but this year just seems like it’s been an extremely long time coming.

Some heat, please

Some heat would help speed drying along. We just haven’t gotten much. I was excited about the prospect of planting when I saw the 7-day forecast last weekend. That didn’t materialize -- the 70-80 degree temps are now only forecast to be mid 50’s.

Though we are at the end of our typical start window, our planters will sit in the shed a few more days. We will focus on burndown herbicides, fertilizer, and stripping.

I received a text from another local farmer Wednesday. It was a picture of a thermometer he stuck in the ground. The 2-inch deep reading was 45 degrees. The previous day it was only 39. I’m sure it’ll be higher today and tomorrow, but it will probably drop off again this weekend.

Most guys would like to see it at least 50 degrees before they plant. If we can’t stand to wait until 50, I’d at least like to see a friendly forecast coming.

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