Sunday, April 14, 2013

Drought Affects WI Agriculture, by Xiaoqi Wu

The drought has influenced agriculture in Wisconsin this year. Dryness allows the harvest to proceed at a rapid pace, but the lack of soil moisture causes crops failures and delays the fall tillage.
According to the statics from United States Department of Agriculture in October, 92 percent of corn is mature, with 39 percent of corn in poor condition. High moisture corn is finished in most areas, and grain moistures continue to fall. 98 percent of soybeans are dropping leaves with 75 percent harvested. Corn ear droppage and soybean pods are shattered in some areas due to the dryness.
The drought also makes fall tillage and fall seeding difficult. Only 21 percent fall tillage is completed. Winter wheat and fall cover crop seedings need rain to germinate. Some farmers delay tillage for more moisture in soil.
Fields need rain to improve crop quality. Significant rain is needed to help winter wheat planting and make tillage easier.
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