Weather not cooperating with the planting schedule

Montana experienced cooler temperatures along with moisture throughout most of the state, according to the Mountain Regional Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA. High temperatures ranged from the low 50s to the mid-70s. Low temperatures ranged from 6 degrees in Chester, Havre, and Dunkirk to the low 30s.

One hundred-two weather stations reported moisture. The highest amount of precipitation was recorded in Rudyard, with 1.52 inches of moisture. Soil moisture conditions were recorded with 46 percent of topsoil rated very-short to short, compared to 29 percent the previous year. Subsoil was rated 70 percent very-short to short, compared with 36 percent last year.

Reporters noted that low temperatures and snow likely mean the end of planting in the north central portion of the state if fields don’t dry within 10 to 15 days. Hard frosts were also reported, and reporters noted light damage to vegetables and potatoes.

Winter wheat seeded was 75 percent complete, behind last year’s progress of 78 percent. Potato harvest was 75 percent complete, ahead of last year’s progress of 51 percent. Corn for grain harvest was 23 percent complete, behind last year’s progress of 30 percent. Sugarbeet harvest was 24 percent complete, compared to last year’s progress of 23 percent.

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