Farmers look for dry weather to start planting

(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The beginning of April is planting season for Region 8 farmers, but the wet weather has put a damper on some plans.

"You've been around the shop, working for a month or two or three months, and so everybody gets kind of anxious this time of year to start getting out in the field and getting some seed in the ground," said Craighead County farmer, Scott Gibson.

The wind and the sunny skies Thursday and Friday helped the fields dry out after about ¾ of an inch of rain on Wednesday.

Gibson was turning the soil over to help it dry quicker Thursday and planned to start planting Friday afternoon and through the weekend.

While farmers need it to be dry to get the seeds in the ground, rain is something they still need to see a little bit of in the forecast.

"A lot of chemicals that we use this time of year are called residual chemicals," Gibson said. "In order to be activated, they need rainfall. So the ideal situation is we would get a half inch every week to activate what chemicals we had put out during the week and that helps with weed control."

As long as nothing drastically changes, Gibson said Northeast Arkansas farmers are still on time for this year's harvest.

"Calendar-wise, it's time," he said. "We're not in an emergency situation by any means now but it's definitely time to get going on the corn, the rice, and there are even some soybeans being planted as well now."

Cotton needs warmer temperatures and drier ground, so it won't be planted for about 3 weeks.

Gibson said farmers are hoping to avoid a large flood like in May 2016, but they just have to work with whatever weather they get.

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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