Home 5 Ag Stories Old Man Winter returns, hampers spring fieldwork

Old Man Winter returns, hampers spring fieldwork

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U.S. farmers and ranchers each year eagerly await spring.

Anticipation continues to build, especially as folks remain homebound. Recent and impending weather, however, puts a temporarily hold on spring fieldwork.

Upper Midwest states received snowfall this Easter. Residents in select areas woke up to more fluffy matter on the ground this morning. Bryce Anderson, chief meteorologist with DTN, says this is not unusual.

“The heavy snow was certainly unwelcome. It set back fieldwork thoughts for awhile,” Anderson said. “I think it will be another week later than producers had hoped for in terms of getting fieldwork going in a real serious fashion. Along with that, there has been some colder air, which is going to lead to soil temperatures being very slow to come back.”

Producers in the I-states started planting soybeans. The National Agricultural Statistic Service’s Upper Midwest Regional Office this past week received reports of both corn and soybeans being planted across Iowa. 

“There has been some soybean planting done. Now, after the cold came in, there are growers wondering how their soybean planting is going to fare. They’re wondering if the seeds are going to be supported in germination. It’s also going to slow down producers in that party of the country because the soils are not going to favor germination,” Anderson said.

The National Weather Service, based in Des Moines, says a short-lived system will bring additional snow chances to central and southern Iowa Thursday. Early forecasts call for three to six inches along and south of Interstate 80, near the northern Missouri border. Meteorologists, however, expect to see  temperatures rise this weekend.