Farmer braces for ‘extremely dry’ planting season

A southwest Iowa farmer says he’s less than a month away from planting.

“The 5th of April time frame is when I’ll probably get started,” Duane Aistrope said.

Aistrope says farmers in his area are dealing with extremely dry conditions. “In the past years, we’ve had timely rains and lived off subsoil moisture and had pretty good yields,” he said, “but I think we’ve depleted our subsoil moisture the last three years.”

He tells Brownfield it’s the worst drought he’s ever experienced. “We’re going around pulling out electric fences and normally this time of year you get it up, there’s mud and stuff on the bottom of the post, you’ve got to tap it against the side of the four-wheeler before you throw it in there. The posts are coming out of the ground completely clean. No moisture, no mud. Nothing is stuck to the post.”

Aistrope raises corn, soybeans, and operates a cow-calf operation in Fremont County.

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