FARMERS’ FIELDS: Location Matters For Moisture

farmer_400

Farmers in Northwest Iowa have dry fields, where a frost layer prevents the rain or snow from sinking in. Climatologists say that part of the state never had a chance to recover from the dry fall. But to the south and east, farmers expect a bumper crop.

Roger Zylstra is a farmer with land near Lynnville, Iowa. He will plant 450 acres of corn and 300 acres of soybeans this year. According to Zylstra, conditions on his farm this March are like night and day compared to what they were at this time last year.

“We`re not saturated like we were the past two years; we`ve had excessive moisture the last two years,” said Zylstra.

Zylstra said they have seen just the right amount of precipitation this winter. In addition, mild temperatures have led to the ground being just about thawed, so the moisture can seep in.

Zylstra said he plans to be ready to plant on April 11th, which is earlier compared to last year, where they had to wait until the end of April.

“The further southeast you get in the state the better things,” said State Climatologist Harry Hillaker. He says those conditions are unique this year, especially since he said Southeast Iowa was one of the worst off drought-wise last summer. However he said the north central and northwest parts of the states are still a little dry. Hillaker explained the warm weather and forecasted rain should start to make up the moisture deficit.

Farmers in Northwest Iowa have dry fields, where a frost layer prevents the rain or snow from sinking in. Climatologists say that part of the state never had a chance to recover from the dry fall. But to the south and east, farmers expect a bumper crop.

Roger Zylstra is a farmer with land near Lynnville, Iowa. He will plant 450 acres of corn and 300 acres of soybeans this year. According to Zylstra, conditions on his farm this March are like night and day compared to what they were at this time last year.

“We`re not saturated like we were the past two years; we`ve had excessive moisture the last two years,” said Zylstra.

Zylstra said they have seen just the right amount of precipitation this winter. In addition, mild temperatures have led to the ground being just about thawed, so the moisture can seep in.

Zylstra said he plans to be ready to plant on April 11th, which is earlier compared to last year, where they had to wait until the end of April.

“The further southeast you get in the state the better things,” said State Climatologist Harry Hillaker. He says those conditions are unique this year, especially since he said Southeast Iowa was one of the worst off drought-wise last summer. However he said the north central and northwest parts of the states are still a little dry. Hillaker explained the warm weather and forecasted rain should start to make up the moisture deficit.