Farming season taking a slow start - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Farming season taking a slow start

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With last month's cold temps, some Tri-State farmers are off to a slow planting start. 

So when do farmers expect to start planting?

Workers were out all day at Wagner Farm on Millersburg Road in Chandler, testing new seeding equipment, but say this week just hasn't been warm enough to start planting.


"We started planting corn the last day of March last year," Steven Wagner said.

But farmers say this year is a different story.  

"You've got the tale of two cities just about here," said Mike Smith, a UK Agricultural Extension agent in Henderson County.

14 News Chief Meteorologist Jeff Lyons says this March was one of the coolest on record. This March, the average temperature was about six degrees below normal, while in March 2012, the average temps were about 13 degrees above normal.  

For farmers like Wagner this means crop planting is running a little behind.

"We've got a thermometer out there. It says 42 degrees. You want at least 50 degrees before you put a corn planter out," Wagner said.

In Henderson, Smith says the wheat is shorter than normal for this time of year and there's been no planting of corn and soybeans there either. Smith says cows are affected, too, still having to eat their winter hay.

"We do have some people that might need some hay as a result of slow-growing pastures," Smith said.

Farmers tell 14 News they're hopeful though that planting a few days late won't have negative effects on their farming season overall.

"We just need some warmer weather and we could be rolling hard in a few days," Wagner said.

Wagner tells 14 New if the weather does warm up he could start planting corn and soybeans by this time next week.

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