Dry spring yields early planting
Area farmers are seeing the benefits of an unseasonably warm and dry spring, but a rainfall deficit could spell problems over time as crops begin to mature into the critical growth stages, according to a local agricultural official.
“This is probably one of the earliest plantings on record because of the unseasonably warm temperatures we saw in March,” said Anthony Bland, county agent with the Mississippi State Agricultural Extension Office. “Right now, I’d say we’re about 2-3 weeks early on our plantings, if you take an average of all our farmers. But, some are as much as four weeks ahead of schedule.”
Bland said temperatures during March, which reached as high as the mid-80s, were the primary factor for the early plantings. However, he noted that low rainfall has made it easier for growers to get equipment in the fields to plant.