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Farmers Worried April Snow Signals Repeat Of Last Spring

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(credit: CBS) John Lauritsen
John Lauritsen is a reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A year ago, the spring snow went into May, and it prevented some farmers from getting their crops in.

“That was extraordinarily bad,” said Dave Pfarr, who farms 900 acres in Sibley County. “No window in April. No window in May. Then they were pushed into June and by then many farmers could not plant at all.”

He said he barely got his corn planted last year, and with eight inches of snow falling overnight, he said they’re already about a week and half behind this year.

“We’d rather have rain and warm temps to drive that frost out,” Pfarr said. “Right now we still have four to four and-a-half feet of frost in the soil.”

The hope now is to have a couple weeks of mild temperatures to get rid of the frost in the fields, and give farmers a chance to start their fieldwork.

Pfarr said, ideally, they’d like to start planting by the third or fourth week of April.

But Mother Nature has already made that difficult.

The good news is that Thursday’s snow gave farmers about a half-inch of much-needed moisture for planting.

The bad news is that while we’re only four days into April, it looks a little too much like last year.

“It’s going to take a good three weeks of good conditions where we can condition the soil, traffic it on the soils, and then fertilize it,” Pfarr said.

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