October Snow Storm Damages Crops - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

October Snow Storm Damages Crops


This weekends storm took it's toll on crops.
Strong winds and heavy, wet snow are bad news for many row crops still standing in the fields.
Ag Reporter Sarah Gustin takes a look at the damage.

An October snow storm is too early for crops like these.
(Wayne Braun / Farmer) "We had about a foot of accumulation on the ground after it was all over. started at 7 o'clock in the morning and it just kept snowing the next morning."
Wayne Braun farms in the New Salem area.
These sunflowers about 6 miles north of Sweet Briar took a hard hit this weekend.
(Sarah Gustin / sgustin@kxnet.com) "As you can see heavy wind and snow don't mix for sunflowers. Braun estimates at least an 80% loss on fields like these." 
(Wayne Braun / Farmer) "The wet snow and the wind. They just couldn't take that much weight and they went down." 
(Jackie Buckley / Morton Co. Extension Agent) "The heads are so heavy and once they get that heavy snow on them they basically tip over because their brace roots, just can't hold them up." 
Braun says he can't remember a storm that hit this early that had this big of an impact.
He says at least 1/2 of the sunflowers he grows in this area are damaged.
(Wayne Braun / Farmer) "The sunflowers got hit the hardest.From pretty bad to not too bad. Everything else seemed to come through ok. 
While the sunflowers took the hardest hit, other major crops are also now recovering as the snow melts.
(Jackie Buckley / Morton Co. Extension Agent) "Corn is more sturdy and there is not as much leaf material there to make fall down. I would guess in some areas there is some corn laying down. Soybeans will probably be ok. "
(Wayne Braun / Farmer) "The ear corn the ripe corn seemed to take it real well. The soybeans really surprised me. I thought that would be the crop down under the snow and gone. Driving around today, they look good. We have some later silage corn that was green. That took a hit. But I think we can get under it. It's not down on the ground like the flowers are."
Buckley estimates many producers in Morton County will see 10-20% damage in their sunflower crops.

Buckley says another concern farmers should be aware of is if any dry edible beans haven't been harvested, the snow and moisture will probably cause some bleaching damage.


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