North Dakota farmers troubled by wet, cold weather

Local News

According to the North Dakota Crop report, only 43 percent of corn has been harvested so far, and it isn’t just farmers dealing with the problem.

Farmers have been battling rain, snow, ice and below-freezing temperatures this harvest season. Flatland Farms owner, Gary Neshem, said he’s only harvested about 30 percent of his 700 acres.

The below-freezing temperatures are stopping him from combining more. He’s had to change his schedule to try and yield the most crops.

“Combined our last field of sunflowers,” said Neshem. “We started at midnight because it was cold and we got done about 9:30 in the morning but we had to get them off. We were fighting the same thing there, with, it was too warm during the day, so well we got to go at night.”

He said he hasn’t had to change his schedule for the corn … yet. Most of the corn he’s harvested has been wet so he’s had to dry it.

Some farmers don’t have one and have to use one from an elevator like Berthold Farmers Elevator. But this season has them behind too.

“We haven’t taken much wet corn because we haven’t been able to dry it right away, ” said Dan Mostad, general manager, Berthold Farmers Elevator. “The wet bin still has soybeans in it, so we’ve been processing those.”

With snow in the forecast and the temperatures not getting warmer, they’re facing a decision of leaving it until spring or getting it out of the ground now.

Neshem is hopeful the weather will cooperate enough to get the rest of his.

“We’re going to keep trying to get it,” Neshem said. “You either fight it now or you’re going to fight it in the spring. We’re six weeks to two months behind with what we should be doing here on the farm. We’re combining when we should be moving commodities to market.”

And farmers who choose to wait…

“That crop is still on the back of their mind all the way through wintertime while they’re doing whatever in their normal lives, or lives outside of farming, they’re thinking about that corn or whatever crop is still on the field that is going to be dealt with in the springtime,” said Mostad.

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