Posted 5/09/12 (Wed)
By Lauren Billing
Farmer Staff Writer
Early seeding in McKenzie County continues to run way ahead of last year’s late start. With no snow around the county, recent welcomed moisture and with most operations running about two weeks ahead of usual, local farmers are enjoying a wonderful spring.
“So far, it’s the opposite of last year,” says Bob Wisness, who farms outside of Arnegard. “We didn’t turn a wheel in the field until May 17 last year and we’ll be done by then this year.”
Wisness started his seeding April 4, just three days after the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation’s (FCIC) official early planting date, and has already completed over half of his seeding. There are others, however, who are just getting underway.
Calli Thorne, the Agriculture Extension Agent for McKenzie County, knows that progress is still varied across the county, especially since the early warm weather has allowed for a lot of time to get seeds in the ground.
“There’s really a mix right now,” says Thorne. “Some are more than halfway done and others have only gotten a few acres in.”
The differences in progress, however, do not negate the optimum conditions.
“I know a lot of farmers are just happy to be in the field after last year’s late start,” says Thorne.
Kent Taylor, of Taylor Ag, works all across McKenzie County. He also knows that many local farmers were concerned about the lack of moisture the area received last winter and early this spring, but recent moisture has helped to lessen some of those concerns.
“I don’t think anyone minds a little slowdown with the recent rains,” says Taylor. “There is still a lot of time to finish planting, and I think many farmers are more optimistic since the rain.”
Hopefully, with some more moisture on top of the early seeding, good conditions will continue and yield a bountiful harvest.