As April fades out and May springs in, the seeding season also begins to take root, albeit rather late, slow and hesitant.
According to the first crop report of the year, released on Thursday, the moisture levels in the ground are adequate at the moment, but not for much longer.
"Thank goodness we got the snowstorm that we did, as things are drying up quite quickly here now," shared Alameda area producer Edgar Hammermeister, adding that a regional aspect has shown varying amounts even between east and west of the Energy City.
"I think there's probably enough moisture to get things started, but we'll be looking for timely rains to keep things going, pretty soon."
"It's mixed blessings working with the wind. We like to have a little bit of a breeze to try and get some of the low spots dried up so we can have more straight running when we're driving the equipment, however, it can be too much of a good thing and cause a lot of drying," he also shared.
"One thing that I noticed when I've been doing the soil sampling for my consulting business is a difference between the stubble types. Anything that had a cereal stubble, even a canola stubble, is pretty good. Anything that was a little taller and had a mulch because of the chopped straw behind it, that's holding moisture fairly well on the soil. However, the soybean ground and to a certain degree the lentils and pea stubble, that can be drying out fairly quickly, just because there, A, wasn't enough any stubble to collect soil and, B, there isn't a lot of residue there to slow the wind down."
Hammermeister noted that, in general, farmers may be getting off to a slower start than the long term average for the area. However, due to the nature of most of the fields, he expects the seeding to catch up, especially with moisture expected later in the month.