A weekend of dry weather and several good drying days this week have planters rolling in many parts of the state. Brian Early, with DuPont Pioneer in east central Indiana, says planting and replanting are underway, “We have many fields that have dried out, but you don’t have to push down very far to find there is still a good deal of moisture in the soil.” He told HAT rain totals in the north were a little lower and, thus, they got back in the fields over the weekend.
In addition to wet soil, Early said soil crusting is a major issue, “In some fields, it is light enough that the crops may break through, but in some areas, the crust will be too hard for newly planted seeds to break through.” He said, in the next few days, growers should be able to tell which fields can be saved and which will have to be replanted.
According to Early, breaking up soil crust can be a difficult management chore, “You can try a rotary hoe, but the issue we have had with these is they do not have a lot of down pressure and sometimes cannot break through the soil.” He said some growers have used a planter or vertical tillage tool, “These options are very time-consuming.”
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