While the western half of the state narrows in on wrapping up planting, some areas in the eastern region are behind, and may not be able to get all their crops in this year.
Rain swept through the state the week ending May 22, and especially over Memorial Day weekend.
In the eastern region, Julianne Racine, NDSU LaMoure County Extension agent, said a few acres of corn are still in the field from last year, and producers are continuing to combine. Some producers are going to take prevented plant.
Rain has continued to slow down planting, and many fields still have wet areas.
“Rain continues to hamper seeding efforts,” she said.
Corn is emerging out in the fields. However, frost received the third week of May damaged some crops and stunted growth.
Racine wanted to remind producers about drift when spraying. With the windy days they have had in the county, drift has been a significant problem of late, and Racine has received complaints.
“We have to remember to notify everyone in the areas, even those who live in houses that the field backs up to, about when we are planning to spray. Some homeowners may want to cover their gardens,” she said.
Randy Grueneich, NDSU Barnes County Extension agent, said producers are making good planting progress in his area.
“We have corn, soybeans and wheat all going in at the same time as they are planting fields as soon as they are dry enough,” Grueneich said.
Some corn continues to be harvested in the county.
“Corn appears to have the most acres that will not get planted, and with the insurance deadline, most are done and will take prevented plant on the remaining unseeded acres,” he added.
In Burke County, Dan Folske, NDSU Burke County Extension agent, said a few acres of soybeans, flax and sunflowers need to be harvested. Some are continuing to cut.
Planting of small grains and peas is moving ahead quickly.
“Most of the producers I’ve talked with the last few days are done with peas, oats, barley and 75 percent or more complete with spring wheat and durum. Canola is probably 50 percent done,” he said.
Burke County didn’t receive much rain over Memorial Day weekend, so some producers finished seeding the following week.
On the border of North Dakota/Montana in the southwestern region, Ashley Uekert, NDSU Golden Valley County Extension agent, said seeding is rapidly finishing up.
“Most producers are finishing up planting with some producers having corn, small grains and sunflowers left to plant,” she said.
Other than a few producers who may be experiencing breakdowns, there shouldn’t be many issues getting crops planted in a timely fashion.
“Our topsoil was getting fairly dry, but the subsoil moisture is good,” she said. “Rain (over Memorial Day weekend) ranged about a half inch to .40-.60 inches. That will help get us back on track and the rest of the grain can be planted into some moisture.”
Up in the northwestern region, grass and hay crops “look to have a very good start this year,” said Clair Keene, NDSU Extension specialist in cropping systems at Williston Research Extension Center.
Keene said planting is about three-fourths finished.
“A lot of planting progress has been made in the northwestern region,” she said, estimating about 75 percent of crops were planted in the western region counties, including Williams, Divide, and most of Mountrail.
Producers in the eastern and northern regions have slightly less finished.
“McKenzie County producers are close to done. Throughout the counties, most of the spring small grains and pulses have been planted,” she said. “Warm season crops like soybean, sunflower, and corn are what still need to go in the ground, but I think guys have even started on those.”
Weeds like narrow leaf hawksbeard, horseweed, and kochia are all up and going and need to get sprayed soon before they get too big. Some hawksbeard and horseweed is already starting to bolt, so the window for control of them is closing fast.”
Spring has been extremely dry so far in the northwestern part of the state. The region received 0.25-0.50 inches of rain over Memorial Day weekend.
“We will need more in the coming weeks to get things off to a good start. We’re supposed to be in the 70s this week and then heat up to 80s and maybe even 90s early next week,” Keene said. “If we don’t get some rain to get us through that, I expect things will start to look stressed.”
In the far southwestern region, Hannah Nordby, NDSU Adams County Extension agent, said most planting is done.
“Most producers are finished. Things are getting pretty dry. Thankfully there’s still an abundance of subsoil moisture – if plants can get to it that is,” she said.
According to the National Ag Statistics Service, North Dakota, soybean planting was only 46 percent, behind the five-year average, with 4 percent emerged.
Small grains, peas and canola are three-fourths finished, with sugarbeets nearly at 100 percent.
Sunflowers are 21 percent planted, behind the average of 39 percent.