Going back to over a year ago, our area has been bombarded with precipitation. Measurements I have seen have indicated we received over 66 inches of rain last summer and nearly 100 inches of snow this past winter.
It seems like this precipitation is relentless. I keep praying that we can catch a break, but it just hasn’t let up at all. It may feel like it’s just us and we have it the worst, but we don’t. Take a look around the country and you’ll see many states flooding worse than us.
Or being ravaged by tornadoes. My brother went to Kansas last week and as he drove along the Nebraska/Iowa border, he said all you can smell is rotting corn. He also said you’ll see buildings, vehicles, tractors and more things out of place that were pushed along because of the extreme flooding they’ve faced. The worst part is these states that are suffering from an over abundance of water are the most agricultural rich states.
Yesterday, the Minnesota Farm Bureau President Kevin Paap released some startling statistics regarding agriculture in Minnesota from the United States Department of Agriculture.
As of May 26, 66 percent of Minnesota’s corn is planted, eight days behind last year and 13 days behind the five-year average. 21percent of the corn is up, two weeks behind normal.
Soybeans are 35 percent planted, eight days behind last year and two weeks behind the average, while three percent of the soybean crop has emerged.
Looking at the national picture, only 58 percent of the nation’s corn crop has been planted while on May 26, 2018, 90 percent was planted with the five-year average being 90 percent planted. All this precipitation is causing problems I never dreamed of.
For example, I’ve never really dived into my family’s prevented planting plan. I know we have crop insurance, but I’ve never worried about getting our crops in by the deadlines. Not this year. Raising livestock has been especially challenging due to all the excess moisture.
Animals need to be dry to stay healthy and it’s been difficult to keep them that way. Because of all the precipitation, we’ve been using thicker layers of wood shavings below the straw to help absorb the moisture for our livestock.
That has been working well thankfully. However, due to the late or lack of planting for small grains like wheat and oats, straw will be an even harder commodity to get.
We need to get something in the ground, or we won’t be able to feed our animals. There are people that are already out of feed from last year and have had to sell off parts of their herds. C
onsumers should be bracing for higher prices if this planting season never takes off. It will have a trickle effect.
Area farmers are invited to attend Rep. Collin Peterson’s town hall meeting in Marshall at 10 a.m., Thursday, May 30 at the Mercantile Banquet Room at Bello Cucina at to discuss the challenging issues facing Minnesota farmers right now.
State Senator Gary Dahms will be hosting a town hall meeting with Rep. Chris Swedzinski in Marshall from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the YMCA on Tuesday, June 4. It’s another opportunity for constituents to voice their concerns.
I speak for most people when I say, “Rain, rain, go away!”