Sugar beet farmers slowed down by wind; wait for wet weather thi - Scottsbluff Area News, Sports, and Weather

Sugar beet farmers slowed down by wind; wait for wet weather this weekend

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Mid-April is the time when farmers across the panhandle start planting sugar beets and so far they are more than half way done this season.

But standing in the way of some farmers is Mother Nature. The biggest obstacle they are facing this week is the intense winds sweeping through the area.

Jerry Darnell, Regional Ag Manager for Western Sugar Cooperative, says the next few days are important because the biggest concern is the wind which affects how much moisture gets into the ground.

Despite the gusts, Darnell says farmers are right on track this sugar beet season with having 60 percent of their planting done.

He says this time last year the sugar beet season was off to a really wet start and only 25 percent of planting was completed. But he says that’s just the opposite this year and more concern is circulating around the wind and how it's affecting the soil.

"The upper part of the soil is just depleted of moisture so we're having a hard time getting the seed to germinate. We're hoping this weekend that the rain and snowstorm that will happen either Saturday or Sunday get us off to a good start," said Darnell.

Darnell went on to say that farmers remain optimistic for the sugar beet season this year.
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