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July 4, 2020
 

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Hardin rainfall lower than last year in last half of April

By Mark Badertscher 
April 15-30 Liberty Township rainfall registered slightly under 1 inch, according to Phil Epley, who recorded it for the Hardin County Extension Office.

The county average during that period was 1.54 inches with the highest recorded rainfall in McDonald Township at 1.95 inches. Blanchard Township’s 0.70 inches was the lowest.

Last year, the average rainfall for the same time period was 4.08 inches. Rainfall for the April 15-30 time period is 0.83 inches less than the 10-year average rainfall during the same dates. 

Limited field work occurred in April with regular rains and cool temperatures early keeping soils wet until late in the month for most of the county. 

Early May brought warmer and drier weather allowing for the planting of corn and soybeans until the recent rains. Wheat fields showed slow growth due to the cool temperatures in April and early May. Spring forage planting was also delayed by wet field conditions.

Farmers are hoping for fields to become fit to continue planting corn and soybeans, as well as herbicide applications for weeds. As temperatures warm up and winds pick up, soils should dry out from the excess moisture. 

Ideally corn is planted by May 10, but this year that will be later for some because of the conditions. Farmers are encouraged not to work in wet fields as it compacts the soil and impacts yields. 

Delay of corn planting can also limit yields depending on the weather received during the growing season, however with less impact than compaction. Warmer temperatures are needed to get the planted corn and soybeans to emerge and get off to a good start while ponding in some fields may require replanting in certain areas.