Category: Farming

The latest on Prevented Planting, Disaster Aid, and Trade Assistance

Farmers nationwide have been impacted by poor weather, low prices and trade disruption. Crop insurance, disaster assistance and trade assistance payments will help farmers survive what has been a challenging 2019 crop season, but many questions still exist around what each will entail.

Prevented Planting

Farmers who were prevented from planting a crop will receive a portion of their crop insurance guarantee without the benefit of the harvest price option. For corn,

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Workshops teach skills to help farm youth experiencing stress

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture will be holding workshops this July that will provide rural professionals with the tools to help farm youth experiencing stress. The free, three hour workshop will be held in Willmar on July 22 and Detroit Lakes July 25.

As the challenges facing the farm economy continue to impact Greater Minnesota, the workshops will be an opportunity for rural residents who routinely engage with school-aged children to develop the knowledge and skills to understand and support rural youth impacted by on-farm stress.

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Spring Planting

Prevented planting: Deadlines, resources for farmers impacted by wet spring

The weather models for much of Minnesota’s farm country look ominous, causing many farmers to start looking at prevented planting as the window for planting corn narrows.

The first step for corn farmers examining prevented planting is to contact their crop insurance agent, who can help determine eligibility and reporting requirements. An agent will be vital in determining acres eligible for prevented planting payments, as one example.

Final planting date is May 31 for corn in southern Minnesota,

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With wet spring, Walz waives hours of service requirements for fertilizer trucks

Gov. Tim Walz has issued an emergency executive order granting a temporary exemption from hours of service requirements for commercial vehicle drivers delivering anhydrous ammonia or other fertilizers to Minnesota farmers.

In the executive order, Walz credited February/March major snow events, along with flooding and a wet spring, for delaying planting across the state. With the shortened spring planting season, fertilizer retailers are experiencing increased demand. The exemption will help drivers now traveling longer distances to farmers during the shorter window for planting.

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University of Minnesota graduate students join the worldwide web of precision ag

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The power of information is taking leaps and bounds in the world of agriculture and nowhere was this more evident than at the 2019 Production Agriculture Symposium, held last month at the University of Minnesota. This year’s conference was titled, “Dialing In: Precision Agriculture in Action.”

Hundreds of students from both the University of Minnesota and other higher learning institutions attended the symposium, which was supported by the Minnesota Corn Research &

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Now is a good time to replenish propane supply

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

A recent downward price trend in the commodity propane market presents an opportunity for farmers who are currently drying grain.

“Residential heating and agricultural end users, and also the providers that retail to them, will want to make sure to replenish your supply now,” said Dennis St. Aubin, director of sales, marketing and energy equipment for CHS, Inc. “Demand tends to lull around the holiday here.

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Minnesota Department of Agriculture launches resource for farmers dealing with stress

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture launched as a quick way to find people and organizations that are able to help Minnesota farmers and farm families with unique challenges on the farm.

At, visitors can clearly see the various resources available to help with financial, emotional, legal, family and other challenges on the farm.

Resources include the Minnesota Farm & Rural Helpline at 833-600-2670, which is answered 24/7 by staff who are trained to help farmers who are struggling with stress or depression.

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National Corn Growers Association Fields-of-Corn Contest wants your harvest photos

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) announced the Fifth-Annual Fields-of-Corn Contest, calling for both amateur and professional photographers to help share the story of farming field corn in America. Through this contest, NCGA captures high-resolution photos of corn growth from seed to harvest and the families that grow it.

Open for entries until November 30, 2018, the Fields-of-Corn photo contest offers a free opportunity for photographers to share their work while competing for 25 cash prizes.

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Palmer amaranth concerns reinforce need to review seed labels

Concerning reports from Minnesota farm country have identified Palmer amaranth in farm fields, with the latest coming last week in Jackson County. While state officials are hard at work investigating the source of the invasive weed, farmers can play a role in preventing it spreading by taking extra precautions.

First, officials have recommended farmers take an extra look at the labels found on cover crop seed mixtures. Palmer amaranth is listed as a “Prohibitive Weed Seed,” meaning it is not allowed in any seed offered for sale in the state.

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Fall weather brings harvest to a halt across MN

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The majority of Minnesota’s corn crop—75 percent—has been rated good to excellent in the latest National Agricultural Statistics Service report (October 15), and the crop is ahead of average for maturity by this date—97 percent mature, compared to 90 percent average over the previous five years.

But a scant 1.1 days last week were suitable for field work, and crop progress reflects the challenges imposed by cold,

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