Winter Storms Bring Hope to Area Farmers as Soil Moisture Replenishes


Local farmers are feeling some relief now that the weather has turned warmer. Roseville farmer and Past American Soybean Association Chairman Ron Moore says the brutal cold and snow events were hard on the livestock and the farmers.

“When it gets really, really cold, 10-15 degrees below zero with a -30 windchill, it takes a lot more energy to keep those cattle warm and they don’t gain as well,” said Moore. “The hog producers, it’s a little easier. As long as they have power in their buildings, their hogs are protected from this cold weather. But they have to get to their hog buildings to make sure they are ok, and make sure the generators are working if the power goes off, the waters are working. It’s really hard on the farmers that have hog productions. And out cattle have fared pretty well.”

Moore says they use heated water and more feed to help keep the cattle comfortable in the extreme weather conditions.

As local residents saw a January with multiple snow events and below average temperatures, some farmers are looking at the moisture as a positive for the upcoming growing season. However, Moore says reports show we could have a drier season.

“The reports I’ve been hearing and reading are saying that El Nino is fast declining. Depending how fast it switches to a La Nina, we could have a drier summer growing season,” says Moore. “I’m not sure how you can get much drier than last summer’s growing season, but that is the potential.”

He adds the January weather creates a lot of much-needed moisture for our local fields.

“Our tiles have started running. Under the 12 inches of snow in this area, the ground is not frozen. So, as the snow melts this week, we get some more rain, there is a high likelihood it is going to soak into the ground.”

That moisture is having an impact on replenishing waterways such as the Mississippi River which is improving America’s ability to move products to other countries.

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