Variable soils driving planting progress

A Michigan agronomist says soil moisture levels are driving where farmers have been able make progress on spring fieldwork.

Helena’s Ben Wilson tells Brownfield, “We’ve certainly got more rain on the West side I would say.”

“The light soils over there are moderating pretty well but the heavier dirt, the rolling clays on the West side are getting held up,” he says “The central and eastern region I would say is somewhat on par with not being too bad on spring rains.”

Wilson also farms with his family in Gratiot County where he says some planting has started.

“We’ve been able to plant some of our crops,” he shares. “We did some spring seeded alfalfa week and half ago, planted a little bit of oats on some variable soils. We did plant sugar beets the last couple of days, we just got started. We’re about halfway done.”

He estimates about 20 percent of sugarbeets have been planted for Michigan Sugar.

Wilson says he expects greater pest and weed pressure to start this season because of the warm, wet conditions.

AUDIO: Ben Wilson

Photo courtesy of Michigan Sugar Company.

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