The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

May 14, 2013

Minn. farmers finally start spring planting

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — After a cold and wet spring, Minnesota farmers finally have made significant progress in planting.

According to the weekly crops and weather report for Minnesota, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says there were 3.6 days rated suitable for fieldwork last week. That compares with only 1.3 days the week before.

But statewide temperatures remained below normal and planting is off-pace.

Oats are 33 percent planted, compared with 100 percent last year and a five-year average of 79 percent. Barley is 8 percent planted, compared with 100 percent last year and a 62 percent average. Sugar beets are 50 percent planted, compared with 100 percent last year and an average of 70 percent.

Corn is 18 percent planted, well behind both last year's 86 percent and the average of 68 percent.

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