Farm Horizons, August 2014

Tough year for farmers with all the rain

By Aaron Schultz

Dave Marquardt has been farming for 20-plus years now, and he hasn’t seen another season like this.

“We’ve had stretches before where we couldn’t get started, but eventually things would dry out so we could get going,” Marquardt said. “But this year, every week we waited, it just got wetter.”

Marquardt farms south of Howard Lake, and while this year has been a challenge for him, it is nothing compared to what some farmers have had to deal with south of his place.

“We’ve been fortunate where we have been able to get a crop planted in each and every one of our fields. But if you go just south of us, they got hit harder, and there are many fields where they haven’t been able to get started,” Marquardt said. “Yes, we’ve been able to get a crop in every field, but many of them don’t look too good.”

Marquardt mentioned that many of his crops either got in late, or just are not doing all that well, but they are in. “It’s a pretty ugly crop,” he stated.

The biggest challenge for Marquardt and other farmers has been just being able to get into the fields at all due to all of the heavy rain and flooding.

Spring was fairly wet, and it has continued to be wet into the summer, with June going down as one of the wettest Junes in the history of Minnesota.

All that rain just didn’t have anywhere to go, and ended up sitting in many of the farmers’ fields, making it difficult to even get out there and get the crops planted.

And now, Marquardt and other farmers who were able to get some crops planted need Mother Nature to cooperate into the fall in order to harvest some of their crops.

“If a frost comes early, we’ll be in tough shape. We’ll need most of September, and some of the crops will need parts of October,” Marquardt said. “We just want to get this year done and hope for better things next year.”

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