Spring planting still in good position

Authored by Jim Langham on May 23, 2014

If weather forecasts hold true over the weekend, farmers should be going full steam ahead with planting crops sometime this weekend, said Jeff Lehman, of Lehman Feed Mill.
Lehman said that a few things were stirring the past couple of days, especially in cutting hay. He noted that Wednesday’s rain was sparse enough that some hay is ready to be cut while some fields aren’t quite ready.
Some of the biggest issues right now are with soybeans, where the ground has become hardened from some of last week’s beating rains, making it hard for the tiny plants to emerge. He said that some examinations have also indicated root rot among the beans.
“I think most beans will be okay. Some might have to be replanted. As the warm weather we’re starting to get now warms the ground and the sun gets warmer, a lot of the beans will start to emerge,” said Lehman.
Prior to last week’s rainy spell, Lehman said that the first week in May, up to 80 percent of the corn was planted and nearly half of the beans. He said that the corn was a little yellow last week from the cool, wet weather, but he said the past couple of days, some of the corn has already started to come out of it.
“The corn is looking pretty good,” said Lehman.
Lehman said that wheat is a little short, but he expects it to respond to the warm sun over the next couple of weeks.
“Wheat overall will be all right,” said Lehman. “It’s a little short, but I think that it’s going to make a good crop.”
Lehman said that farmers are able to plant much faster these days because of the size of their planters.
“With the equipment we have these days, the farmers are able to cover a lot of ground in a short time,” observed Lehman. “If we get two or three good days, the beans will be whipped.”
Weather specialist Rick McCoy said that it appears that planting conditions will return to much more favorable opportunity over the next week or so. He said that the National Weather Service has added a chance for some precipitation on Monday night, but for the most part, the next week or so appears to be warm and dry.
The extended forecast for the next 30 days calls for cooler than normal temperatures but drier than normal conditions across most of Indiana and into west-central Ohio.
The average high temperature for the first week of June is 78 degrees, climbing to 85 degrees by the first week in July.
“It can be a little cooler than normal, but still warm as we go into the summer months,” said McCoy. “The good thing is that there doesn’t appear to be any extraordinary conditions such as excessive heat or drought on the horizon for the summer months this year.”

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