Cold, wet weather making life tough on Minnesota farmers

Updated: October 15, 2019 05:42 PM

The cool and wet weather we've had recently is making life tough on farmers, according to the latest Minnesota Crop Progress & Condition report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The report said corn is over two weeks behind normal, with the amount of mature corn as much as 20 days behind last year.


Soybeans are also behind schedule, with the percentage of soybeans harvested 16 days behind average.

"We are concerned with the wet conditions in terms of stock rot, in the corn, if things go longer a couple of sunny days will turn that around and people's attitudes as well," David Nicolai, a U of M extension crop expert, said.

Some other crops behind schedule according to the report include:

  • Dry edible beans - 62% harvested, which is three weeks behind average
  • Potatoes - 82% harvested, which is eight days behind average,
  • Sugarbeets - 10% harvested, which is 10 days behind average.

The amount of rain has made for saturated fields for farmers in many areas of the state, with overcast skies and cold temperatures not allowing for much drying.

"You throw this weather stress, this trade stress, stuff like that, there's a lot of stress out there on people. It's tough when mother nature doesn't cooperate," said Goodhue County farmer Les Anderson.

But Anderson says if he can get out his corn faster, grain brokers are calling in need. The weather is dampening that as well.

"I don't ever recall that happening, that they are looking for corn to fill some contracts. It shows you how tight things are," he said.

After another cool and rainy day Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week look to be dry and feature more sunshine, KSTP Chief Meteorologist Dave Dahl said. A chance for scattered showers returns Friday and possibly into Saturday, but neither day figures to have too much rain, and warmer temperatures should allow for more drying, too. However, showers are more likely to return starting Sunday and into the next week.

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