CREATED Jun. 2, 2013
Spring planting season could be in danger. Farmers near Chilton are 3 weeks to a month behind schedule when it comes to getting crops in the ground. If conditions don't improve they could suffer big losses and you could be feeling the effects this summer.
Farmers are playing the hurry up and wait game. They're ready to get started planting, but mother nature just won't let them.
"Hardly anybody has any produce ready yet," said Polly Roland of Polly's Pumpkin Patch in Chilton.
The fields are just no good and it's setting farmers back.
"The surface looks dry, but immediately underneath it's very wet causing problems relevant to tillage. We cannot get a proper seed bed," said Dale Koehler, a farming equipment operator.
The equipment gets stuck in mud, so now, when farmers should be seeing blossoms on their crops, most haven't even planted yet.
"Knee high by the fourth of July I think will be non-existent, at least in this marketplace this year," said Koehler.
The wet ground and cold weather is creating delays in products for those who like fresh, home grown vegetables. Farmer's markets are getting started, but sellers don't have product to fill them up, but say it's coming.
"They're doing good, they're growing good, it's just that they're late," said Polly Roland when talking about her pea crop.
Corn and soybeans, staples in agriculture across the country, are not escaping the wet season either. Farmers say it's the exact opposite of the dry spring they saw last year.
"To some degree I think it's easier to work around the cold and the wet than it is the hot that we experienced last year," said Koehler.
That's because time is on their side, at least for now.
"The risk that we take is whether or not that first fall frost is on time," Koehler said.
Farmers are hoping that frost holds off long enough for their product to finish growing.
The most important thing farmers can do right now is till the surface because if they can get the dirt turned, they can at least help air out the soil a little faster