Wet Spring weather challenges Montana farmers

Posted at 11:05 AM, Apr 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-05 13:05:00-04

BOZEMAN – A survey released this week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that virtually no field crops have been planted in Montana.

Farmers usually begin planting spring wheat on April 6 and try to finish within the month.

"The moisture levels are great,” said Callie Cooley, MSU Ag Extension Agent. “So one thing we know that when we end up planting we’ll be planting into moisture which is going to be good for the farmers here."

"But that isn’t to say that they’re not ready to get into the fields because we are seeing that delay. Especially when we’re talking about barley, a lot of farmers would probably already be done planting at this time and in several and probably the majority are not even in the field yet."

Officials say the current conditions and the forecast will delay the planting process.

More information can be found on the USDA website, including the following:

"The remaining snow has made rating the progress and condition of the winter wheat crop difficult in many areas, according to reporters. Winter wheat was reported with 3 percent of the crop breaking dormancy, significantly behind last year’s progress report of 53 percent for the same week. Fifty-eight percent of the winter wheat crop was rated in good to excellent condition."