Three or four weeks ago we were wondering whether or not local corn farmers were going to be able to get their crops planted because of the almost non-stop rainfall we have received for the last six months, but in this week’s From The Ground Up, Joe Brown says, for the most part, all of the moisture is going to be a plus for local ag producers.
"You feel pretty optimistic when you know you can plant something, and know that you’re going to get it up with the moisture you’ve got, and then number two, that it will have a little time once it emerges to have some moisture to work off of before we have to start irrigating later in the late spring and early summer."
Lee Denena says last year was a different story.
"As soon as it got up we had to start hitting it with irrigation. We were spinning our wheels and spending money pretty quick right off the bat last year."
There wasn’t a consistent break from the rains that began in September until the end of February or first of March.
"We were able to get in and do a little bit of work. We’d work for two days, sit for two weeks, work for two days, sit for two weeks, so again the heavier soils that take a little longer to dry out are a little harder nature ground to work, just consequently didn’t get worked this winter."
Denena was able to get all of his corn planted, and the day we talked with him, he was planting milo in a field that hadn’t been worked.
"Most of the sandy, sandy loam soils dried up enough for us to be able to get in and get them planted. Some of the heavier soils, if you had planned on planting them in corn, probably didn’t get it in, or you may still be pushing that window."
Cool temperatures will have many cotton farmers waiting to plant this year.
"A lot of folks will start planting cotton around the first of April in our part of the world, if the soil moisture is correct, and you’re ready, but the temperatures this year, the soil’s a little cool for cotton. I know for myself, I’ll probably wait until the middle of April, just before I even start looking at planting cotton."
And, of course, he’s optimistic.
"Don’t ask a farmer on the day he’s opening his seed bag if he’s optimistic. We’re optimistic as far as growing the crop. The agronomy side of this deal looks good right now."
I’m Joe Brown, looking at Brazos Valley agriculture, From The Ground Up.