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Heavy rain could pose harm for farmers during planting season

By Hanna Mordoh, Reporter, hannam@kmiz.com
Published On: Apr 22 2013 10:49:02 PM CDT
Rain and farming
COLUMBIA, Mo. -

While the recent rain seems like a relief after months of drought, it could be doing harm. For farmers the heavy rains mean falling behind on planting

Just like your garden wouldn't do well being over-watered, farmers say corn and soy beans can't be planted or actually survive when there is so much moisture.

“The window grows tighter and it becomes more of a concern as we go on,” said Terry Hilgedick, who is a Mid-Missouri farmer.

For farmers, that window of opportunity to successfully plant crops is closing. “I would expect after the 10th of May corn planting you would expect to see a 10% yield penalty on corn up until the 25th of May or so. Then beyond that it drops off pretty fast then and costs go up as well,” said Hilgedick.

While the yields aren't at risk just yet, farmers said a few more days of rain could make all the difference. “It pays to have a crop in early with a good system and then you can stand a little more dry weather in the summer,” said Hilgedick.

Farmers said ten days of clear weather would be perfect. At this point some said they would prefer last summers drought over this much rain. When ABC 17 News asked Hilgedick if most farmers are encountering the same issues, he said “Everyone that I know of is struggling with fields being too wet to work in.”

It's not only a problem for farmers though, if the rain keeps up it could cost people at the grocery store. “If they yield less there’s less grain to be consumed by all the different uses of grain whether that’s for consumers or for live stock,” said Hilgedick.

At the end of the day, rain or drought, farmers said it’s all part of planting in Missouri.

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