Cold weather limiting planting so far

Lawrence Onweller

With the nice weather, it worked out really well. We were able to get all the fertilizer spread and get the tiling finished up. We had a cold snap there just after the nice weather then we got some rain. When it dries off again, things will be ready to go. There were a few guys in the area that got some crops planted. I’ve got a friend in the area that got 220 acres of corn planted and a bunch of other guys started to plant beans. That gave them an opportunity to get the bugs out and get things working so they’ll be ready to go when the weather’s ready to go. There was also tillage and that type of stuff going on. With that nice weather, it’s hard for a farmer just to stay inside.

When it dries out next time, we’ll be getting closer to the end of April. And once you get into the first part of May, guys will start pushing it, but from now until the end of April, if it’s dry and the forecast is going to be warm, they’re going to get going. 

It’s typical Ohio weather. You can have a 10-day forecast that looks wide open and by the time you get three days into it, it all changes. Farmers plan to do something every day, and if you can’t, you can’t. But you’ve got to be ready to go when it when the weather is fit, because it’s such a limited window of time.

We usually concentrate on the corn first. There’s a lot of guys that do corn and beans at the same time, and we have the ability to do that. For us, it’s more a matter of the amount of labor. We usually run one planter at a time and that just makes it easy to switch back and forth.

We got some rain this weekend and there is more, cooler weather coming, so guys will not get going until this front moves through. Then when it dries off, they’ll get going again. It’s probably going to mid-week, I would guess, somewhere in there, for us to be back out in the fields.

Doug Miller 

Well right here where we live, we only got three tenths of an inch of rain Friday night into Saturday. The areas around us got more than that. In the last couple of weeks, we got our anhydrous ammonia finished and we have about two days of groundwork left. It never has happened before that we’re that far out ahead with the groundwork this early. For planting beans, we had to get our anhydrous done first to put that tractor on the bean planter. We started planting beans last week and we’re going to start planting corn today. There were a lot of crops going into the ground in the last two weeks around here. The ground is in great shape, but I’m concerned about the cold weather and the corn.

We’re almost to May, so I’m hoping that eventually we warm up like we usually do. My son Charlie told me about people who planted several acres of corn and then quit before the rain because they were worried about the cold and wet. For our area, I think we’re leaning towards the dry side in this part of Ohio, even with the three tenths of rain we got Friday. We sprayed yesterday and we’re going to work around today and plant. 

With weed control, we were fortunate enough to get everything fall sprayed and that really helped going into this spring. We’re in pretty good shape as far as that goes. Driving around the countryside, you can really see the fields that were not fall sprayed.

Charlie has already left with the bean planter this morning. We got a new planter we’re starting out with and my tech will be here this morning to get that rolling. We put Ag Leader row units with the hydraulic down pressure and variable rate population on an old Kinze toolbar. It has tons of bells and whistles and a large learning curve for me.

Jeff Magyar

We’ve had very good weather this spring, but it is abnormally dry for us. We put in about 500 acres — 420 or 430 acres of food grade beans and about 75 acres of oats — starting April 14. We got some rain, about an inch and a half, this weekend. The soybeans wouldn’t have had enough moisture to germinate without it. It had dried out extensively.

We could be back in the field in two days or so but haven’t psyched myself up to plant corn yet. It sounds like it will be a little cool, but I suppose by the end of the week, if it dries out and the ground is in good condition, we will start with corn. 

The planting conditions were best I’ve ever seen, especially for that early. We had perfect seed beds, very dry conditions. It’s very unique because we get the lake effect snow and the lake effect rain here. The cloud formations drop down after Cleveland and we’re always fighting short windows in between rainy periods this time of year. In my lifetime, I’ve only seen two droughts because of the local rain patterns we have right here to probably another 10 miles south of us. The other bad thing we see, if it’s not raining, we’re usually cloud covered. I am slightly worried about a drought this year, but I also believe in the law of averages and that the year will probably average out. Normally, the rain this weekend would put us out of the field for four or five days, but I think we’ll be in sooner because the ground can take most of it.

The forecast has 50s for highs this week with 38 or 39 at night for lows. That’s what’s concerning. The ground isn’t going to warm up fast I don’t think.

In this area we have seen some planting, a lot of tillage, a lot burndown, and a lot of fertilizer put on. I don’t think there were many around here that planted so far, but there were few. We’re looking forward to a good, safe spring for everyone out there. 

Kyle Nietfeld

 We got all of our manure hauled and got that all incorporated. We did work some ground down but we have not planted anything. We feel like it is a little cold yet.

We were actually bit short on manure in one of the fields I wanted to cover. We ran out, but we got everything out of the barns and we have got enough storage capacity to make it until next fall, no problem. The field where I ran short is corn on corn, so I’ll just sidedress at a little heavier rate with 28% nitrogen fertilizer where I ran out. 

We went out to eat yesterday for lunch and drove up to Celina and I think I only saw one field planted the whole time. A lot of groundwork has been done and I’ve heard some guys planting a little bit of beans and a little bit of corn, but up this way there really hasn’t been a whole lot done. These clay soils don’t warm up very well and guys just would rather plant once and not have to come back and do it the second time. 

We had three, three and a half tenths of rain on Friday. As dry as we were prior to the rain Friday, yesterday it would have been fit to go back to the field. We’re going to probably plant some this week, just enough to try everything out. There’s still a lot of 50s and 30s at night, and more rain in the forecast, so we’re going to probably hold off. Then it looks like the warmer temperatures hopefully return after that. The ground we did work down was beautiful and there’s still some moisture down there. When it warms up again and is ready to go, it looks like it should be really nice conditions.

The group of pigs we’ve got right now is the best I’ve had in the last two years as far as disease. This is usually the toughest time of year with the ups and downs and the weather, but with the barns being fully ventilated, it’s pretty easy these days to keep them comfortable.

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