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Published May 06, 2013, 03:47 PM

Lake region farming could suffer from late spring

Lake Region Farmers are keeping an eye on the calendar as they wait for conditions too enough to start planting. Farmland in the region is still too wet and cold for crops and any more delays could start having a drastic effect.

By: Adam Ladwig, WDAZ

Lake Region Farmers are keeping an eye on the calendar as they wait for conditions too enough to start planting. Farmland in the region is still too wet and cold for crops and any more delays could start having a drastic effect.

If farmers don't start sowing their fields soon, they could lose out significantly at harvest time. Farmland in northern Ramsey County is more welcoming to waterfowl than crops at this point. NDSU extension agent Bill Hodous says the best time to get crops in the ground is around May 15th, just over a week from now. But water, and in some cases snow, still covers farmland. Hodous says each day without planting results in a loss of a bushel and a half per acre per day. There's no way to guess exactly when land will be farmable. Hodous says it's especially frustrating after last year's ideal planting conditions.

Hodous: "Since 1993 it's hard to determine what normal is, so last year, basically we were getting pretty well wound up with a lot of our crops by now."

If it takes much longer than May 15th for land to clear up for planting, it could affect crop insurance as well. The insurance deadline for corn is May 25th. If it's not planted within ten days after that, it can't be insured.

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