Planting Gets Underway 03 Apr 12

Some farmers have already begun planting in central and southern Minnesota, thanks to the mild, dry winter and record warmth in March. In its first weekly crop-weather report for Minnesota this season, the USDA says farmers expect full-scale fieldwork to begin on April 12th. That’s seven days ahead of average. Spring wheat was 3% planted as of Sunday, oats were 18% planted and barley was 6% planted. That compares with zero percent for those crops last year and for the 5-year average. Three-percent of land was prepared for corn and 1% was prepared for soybeans. Statewide average temperatures were 10 degrees above normal last week. Rain helped replenish some soil moisture, but the southern third of Minnesota continues to undergo a severe drought.