Old man winter, go away!

Cold spring dampens planting season expectations.

Editor's Note: Blogger Klye Stackhouse did not originally provide a link to his resource looking at the summer weather trend, you can also check it out here.

Usually this time of year there is an air of anticipation, accompanying some restless nights. This year, the only thing in the air is a stiff cold breeze.

We were certainly spoiled with a mild March. Looking ahead at the forecast, significant warm-up comes next weekend. Accompanying it will be more rain. It must be April as the forecast shows about an inch of rain each week this month. None the less, I think we will target the week of the 18th for our planting start date.

A couple weeks ago I mentioned we were trying to finalize soybean plans. That still hasn’t happened. An error in the initial price of seed quoted to us by the company we thought would supply the balance of our needs left us disappointed.

As every dollar is important this year, the difference between expected price and final price of $6-$8 per bag caused us to renew our search for soybean seed. It ended up being a good thing, saving us money.

After combing through some more yield data and product guides, we identified a few varieties that could fill needs on specific farms. We were looking for later beans that could handle more ragged, diseased, or drought prone conditions. We found alternatives from two different seed companies. It was also pleasant to find they were both priced very competitively, coming in at 60% of the cost of many of the other companies we had priced earlier. This price savings of $20 per bag effectively puts us 2.5 bushel ahead before we put the first seed in the ground (using a seeding rate of 1.1 bags per acre = $22 per acre divided by $9 per bushel soybeans).

Even though we believe the varieties to be every bit as good as ones we considered previously, we have a cushion there because of the price difference.

Grain has begun to flow. We were able to hire a retired truck driver in an as needed capacity to help with deliveries. Even though the report beat on us last week, corn taking the brunt of it, we had enough booked to keep him busy while we are in the fields planting. Now, if we can just get the price to go back up….

Back to the weather again, the summer is forecast to be a top five all time hottest and the second driest in the last 10 years. Not that I want a drought, but a good weather scare sure wouldn’t hurt this market. They are already off to a slow start planting in the south with wetter than normal conditions.

Here's the link to that weather forecast.


The opinions of the author are not necessarily those of Farm Futures or Penton Agriculture.

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