Valley farmer hoping for a little more sun, a little less rain

Weather Specials

There's a wide range on how much farmers have been able to plant so far, depending on the weather in their area

MAHONING CO., Ohio (WKBN) – The weather this spring has not been ideal for farmers in the area. Some haven’t even started planting yet.

Springfield Township farmer George Houk spent his afternoon planting a field with soybeans. After getting two-tenths of an inch of rain overnight, he wasn’t sure planting would be possible Tuesday.

“Since we were right on the cusp of being a little bit too wet anyway, then that put us over the edge,” he said.

Tuesday was Houk’s first day of planting. Usually by this time, he would have wanted to have been done.

“We’d like to be totally done by the 10th of May, but the soil was so cold and wet,” he said.

“Right now, we’ve got farms in a lot of different stages,” said Haley Shoemaker, who handles agriculture at the Ohio State University Mahoning County Extension Service.

She said there are other farmers like Houk who have either not started or have started planting. There are others who are three-quarters done.

“There’s a wide range, basically depending on your location and what kind of weather you’ve received in the last couple weeks,” Shoemaker said.

As bad as it is in some places so far this year, it’s nowhere near how wet it was last year.

“I distinctly remember being on a planter in late June, early June last year,” Shoemaker said. “So this is definitely far, far ahead of where we were last year.”

“At least if it’s warm and sunny, it’ll dry off quicker. So I guess that’s my hope now,” Houk said.

He said at this point, he’d like to be planted by June 1.

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