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of schedule so far for this year.

Last Spring, farmers had to get scuba gear on to get out in the fields to plant. We were all looking at corn standing late into the deer season, and soybeans were also looking about the same.

On top of that many of the farmers didn't even plant quite a few of their fields and gave up in early June.

This year- almost a complete reversal. Dry and warmer weather has been the norm. So what does this all mean for this fall???:confused:

WOOSTER, Ohio - By the looks of it, we may be heading into our second spring season of the year and that will be a relief for farmers who planted early or are just getting started.

The National Weather Service Forecast shows daytime highs in the 70s and 80s through the weekend, and lows in the upper 50s to lower 60s. That will offer some relief to farmers who saw temperatures last week dip into the lower 30s, with snow and heavy accumulations in parts of Pennsylvania.

Rob Yost of Lawrence and Beaver counties, Pa., had 250 acres of corn planted by mid-April. He was not worried about losses because the ground where he planted earliest was "exceptionally well drained," he said, and ground temperature was 60 or more degrees.

"It was just hard to resist planting - the weather was so nice," he said.

Fred Pond, owner of Pond Seed Co. in northwest Ohio, said most of the farmers in that part of the state are finished planting corn and so far, it looks to be doing well.

Even though it got cold the past week, he doesn't think it was cold long enough to do serious damage. And, most of the corn has not yet emerged, he said, so it's fairly well protected.

Compared to last year - a record wet spring and delayed planting into the first of June - he said things are going much smoother.

"It's been ideal to get things in," he said. "We're not damaging the ground at all and, boy, that's sure nice."

Where we stand

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service, 57 percent of Ohio corn is planted, compared to just one percent this time last year. In Pa., 27 percent corn is planted, compared to one percent last year.

As for soybeans, NASS says 16 percent of Ohio beans are planted, and five percent of Pa. beans are planted. In Ohio that is 11 percent percent ahead of the five-year average.

April 15 was the average last-freeze date and crop insurance policies do not protect potential replanting costs if farmers plant before the earliest seeding date - April 6. April 20 is the unofficial planting start date recognized by a majority of Ohio farmers.

"There will be a huge volume of corn in the ground regardless of differing planting timeframes," said Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association Executive Director Tadd Nicholson, in a media statement.

"Thousands of wheat acres didn't get planted as intended because of the wet fall and many acres will be used for corn instead. Some wheat acres that did get planted were damaged during the mild wet winter, which caused many farmers to convert these acres to corn to utilize existing fertilizer inputs."

Wheat crop

Statewide in Ohio, 73 percent of wheat has headed, as of April 29.

According to OSU Extension, the first five to 10 days in May will be critical for making decisions on whether or not to apply fungicides for the prevention of head scab.

Presently, the risk is considered to be "low" by the Wheat Scab Prediction Center.

Some concern

Further east into Pa., however, Penn State Agronomy Professor Greg Roth is keeping a watchful eye on how the early-planted crops are faring.

Farmers in the state got a good start in early April, he said, but winter weather made a return the week of April 23, and some fields were covered in snow.

"Historically that's (freezing temperatures) predisposed to damage and reductions," he said.

Roth said he's seen a wide range of soil temperatures, from the 60s to a morning temperature as low as 39 degrees.

He saw some corn emerge mid-April, only to be "burned-off" to the ground, by winter-like temperatures.


"The stuff took three-and-a-half weeks to come up and then we got a hard freeze and burned it back to the ground," he said.

Although he expects most of the burned corn will recover, he said there's a definite "risk" some fields could need replanted.

He said it's taking a lot of days and even weeks to get the seed to sprout, simply because there haven't been enough warm temperature days for sprouting to happen.

On the plus-side, researchers and seed companies have long been touting their improved seeds and protective coatings - to preserve the seed for longer periods until sprouting. This year, the technology is being put to the test.

"I'm hoping that the good seed we have tolerates all of this," Roth said.

http://www.farmanddairy.com/news/pl...-from-last-years-record-wet-spring/36950.html
 

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With an early planting and weather cooperating the balance of the year, getting the crops out of the field may be an easy task-

Here's some more data. Good source of information.

Ohio's Crop Progress Report - April 30th, 2012
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OHIO CROP WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS

"The average temperature for the State was 47.6 degrees, 5.8 degrees below normal for the week ending Sunday, April 29, 2012. Precipitation averaged 0.78 inches, 0.05 inches above normal. There were 29 modified growing degree days, 30 days below normal.

Reporters rated 5.0 days suitable for fieldwork during the seven-day period ending Friday, April 27, 2012. Topsoil moisture was rated 3 percent very short, 19 percent short, 71 percent adequate, and 7 percent surplus.

FIELD ACTIVITIES AND CROP PROGRESS WEEK ENDING SUNDAY APRIL 29th 2012

Temperatures for the State were below normal, while precipitation was slightly above normal for the week. Reporters indicate that field conditions are dryer than usual for this time of year, which has negatively affected germination of planted crops. Growth of hay and wheat fields has slowed down due to lack of rain and cool nights. Other field activities for the week include field application of fertilizers and manure, tilling ground, and corn and soybean planting.

As of Sunday April 29th, corn planted for grain was 57 percent complete, compared to 1 percent last year and 20 percent for the five-year average. Corn emerged was at 6 percent, 5 percent ahead of both last year and the five-year average. Sixteen percent of soybeans were planted, 11 percent ahead of the five-year average. Winter wheat jointed was rated at 73 percent, ahead of both last year and the five-year average by 30 and 24 percent, respectively. Oats emerged were rated at 66 percent, compared to 6 percent last year and 19 percent for the five-year average. Intended potato acreage was 48 percent planted, ahead of both last year by 44 points and the five-year average by 21 points. Both Alfalfa hay and Other hay were 1 percent harvested. Apples at full bloom or beyond were rated at 78 percent, 56 percentage points ahead of last year and 39 points ahead of the five-year average. Peaches at full bloom or beyond were rated at 82 percent, compared to 36 percent last year and 46 percent for the five-year average.

CROP AND LIVESTOCK CONDITION

Apples were 72 percent in fair-to-good condition, 2 points behind last week. Peaches were 58 percent in fair-to-good condition, down from 70 points last week. Hay was 85 percent in fair-to-good condition, down two percentage points from last week. Livestock were 75 percent in fair-to-good condition, down 3 points from last week. Oats were 86 percent in fair-to-good condition, down 4 points from last week. Seventy-seven percent of range and pasture acreage were rated in fair-to-good condition, up 2 percentage points from last week. Seventy-five percent of winter wheat was in fair-to-good condition, down 2 percentage points from last week."

With the warmer temperatures and dryer weather, the early green up can provide deer a nice opportunity at some tasty early browse. I am sure with the mild winter, and the crop fields planted earlier, it may provide for a real healthy deer population this fall. Doe's will have plenty of forage early on providing better nutrition for the fawns before their birth here in the next month, and bucks should also benefit from this as well in antler production.

Let's just hope the coyotes don't take a heavy toll on the fawns this year!

But it's not all good news. The hay fields having less water and cooler nights has slowed that growth this spring somewhat. Will this be a factor going into summer?

What about a heavy frost probability the next month? With early growth, this may affect some of the crops as well in the next month and have a negative impact. The heavy frost we had recently in the northeast area of Ohio, destroyed a good 70% of the grapes in some vineyards.

http://ocj.com/2012/04/ohios-crop-progress-report-april-30th-2012/
 

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Yessir, Mother Nature is sure smiling on our area right now.
I put on 250+ miles today and the farmers are out in force and the fields are looking good :thumbs_up:
 

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So with all the planting going on early and crops in place already, what does this all mean?

Think about Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky and similar states where agriculture is an important part of their states resources and their ability to have a healthy whitetail population. I read an article a few years ago, and some other ones as well stating the same information. Some of their points made a lot of sense, since I saw some of the similar situations as well over they years.

I "think" last years wet spring benefited antler production early on, but hurt the potential of having nutrition at a level needed to reach maximum effectiveness.

Dr. Karl Miller, professor of wildlife ecology and management at the University of Georgia's D. B. Warnell School of Forest Resources, agrees. "Yes, supplying quality nutrition during each season is very important in allowing deer to achieve their full potential," he says. "Many hunters concentrate on summer and fall food plots, when antlers are growing and does are nursing fawns. While these are important, quality food sources during winter and early spring can be equally important.

"While deer don't 'grow' during winter, quality foods will help bucks recover body condition following the rut and allow both bucks and does to enter the spring in better condition," Dr. Miller says. "And better spring condition will likely translate into higher fawn survival and growth, as well as better antler production."

Taking it a step further, to protect them and increase your ability to manipulate the sex and age structure of the herd, the more time they spend on the land you manage, the better. Having all their needs met during every season of the year helps greatly in those efforts.

Keith McCaffrey, a retired research biologist with Wisconsin's Department of Natural Resources, agrees. "If an area contains a superior level of forage and cover, when compared with the surrounding area, whitetails will be drawn to the area and spend a disproportionate amount of their time there during the non-breeding periods of the year," he says.
http://www.northamericanwhitetail.com/2010/09/22/deermanagement_dm_0903deerfactory/
 

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This is great news. Imagine if we had a robust deer population in a lot of the heavy agriculture areas of the state. Then, this fall would really be awesome. :whistle:
 

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Farmers keep this up, the corn will be all planted in the next week or so.

Ohio Weekly Crop Progress Report-May 7, 2012

Never miss the latest news affecting Ohio agriculture. Subscribe to Digital Dale and follow along via Facebook and Twitter.

The average temperature for the State was 68.1 degrees, 12.7 degrees above normal for the week ending Sunday, May 6, 2012. Precipitation averaged 1.91 inches, 1.02 inches above normal. There were 116 modified growing degree days, 53 days above normal. Reporters rated 3.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the seven-day period ending Friday, May 4, 2012. Topsoil moisture was rated 0 percent very short, 10 percent short, 69 percent adequate, and 21 percent surplus.

FIELD ACTIVITIES AND CROP PROGRESS

Temperatures and precipitation for the State changed noticeably as the week progressed. The week started cool and dry, but warmer weather later in the week brought much needed rain. Reporters still indicated that field conditions were still slightly dryer than usual for this time of year. The large temperature swing placed a slight amount of stress on livestock, but the rain was needed to help germinate newly planted crops. Other field activities for the week include hauling grain and application of fertilizer and herbicide.

As of Sunday May 6th, the intended corn crop was 79 percent planted, compared to two percent last year and 33 percent for the five-year average. Corn was 21 percent emerged, compared to one percent last year and eight percent for the five-year average. Thirty-five percent of soybeans were planted, compared to 13 percent for the five-year average. Five percent of soybeans were emerged, three percent ahead of the five-year average. The winter wheat crop was 89 percent jointed, compared to 64 percent last year and 74 percent for the five year average. Six percent of winter wheat was headed, five percent ahead of the five-year average. The oat crop was 86 percent emerged, compared to eight percent last year and 37 percent for the five-year average. The first cutting of alfalfa and other hay were two and once percent complete, respectively. Ninety-nine percent of apples were in full bloom compared to 38 percent last year and 67 percent for the five-year average. Ninety-eight percent of peaches were in full bloom compared to 45 percent last year and 66 percent for the five-year average. Thirteen percent of cucumbers were planted, eleven percent ahead of the five-year average. Strawberry harvest was four percent complete. Potato acreage was 73 percent planted, compared to ten percent last year and 39 percent for the five-year average. Six percent of the processing tomato crop was planted, five percent ahead of the five-year average.

CROP AND LIVESTOCK CONDITION

Apples were 70 percent in fair-to-good condition, two points behind last week. Peaches were 60 percent in fair-to-good condition, up two points from last week. Hay was 88 percent in fair-to-good condition, up three percent from last week. Livestock were 80 percent in fair- to-good condition, up five points from last week. Oats were 82 percent in fair-to-good condition, down four points from last week. Seventy-six percent of range and pasture acreage were rated in fair-to-good condition, down one percent from last week. Seventy-four percent of winter wheat was in fair-to-good condition, down one percent from last week.

http://ocj.com/2012/05/ohio-weekly-crop-progress-report-may-7-2012/
 
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