A wildfire took more than 100 acres out of use May 9, 2011 in Brazos County in Texas. (Courtesy of Texas AgriLife Extension Service photo by Kathleen Phillips)

A farmer from western Pennsylvania texted my cell phone yesterday to tell me that his plans to plant a designated number of acres in corn have been reduced.

The other part of the conversation centered around the potential condition of what was planted last week.

We heard reports of corn that was planted only to be washed out of the rows and in two places at least onto the roadway because of the torrential downpours we had.

For some farmers in Ohio and Pennsylvania, it feels like a nightmare that just won’t quit. It keeps raining and even when it dries up, it doesn’t hold much good news.

The really scary part for me, I told the farmer, was not only what was happening locally and regionally, but across the country. I have a feeling unless some drastic things happen in the weather patterns, farmers across the country better buckle up for a rough ride.

In Texas, cattlemen are being forced to sell of their herds because a drought has taken hold and the pastures are just about dead because of it, and the cost of hay has skyrocketed.

That’s only one portion of the country right now. Jump to the area surrounding the Mississippi River. We are hearing about the thousands of acres of farmland that had to be sacrificed in order to save the greater population.

I have a feeling that although it looks like the best option, it will definitely have an impact on the food supply. I’m not saying it was a bad decision, it was just a decision that had to be made.

Another thing to be concerned about the wheat condition. Some farmers are reporting that the condition is not where they would like it to be and vomitoxin could be a problem if the weather pattern changes from wet and cold to wet and hot.

And, of course, add in the reports of delayed planting across the country. Yes, it did get better and some corn and even soybeans got in the ground. But here we sit again in eastern Ohio, dealing with a wet forecast and soggy ground. The only sunny day forecasted for the area is Saturday.

The farmer in western Pennsylvania said it all, after I commented about all that was going on in the agriculture world.

“Putting it all together is a recipe for disaster, that no one really wants to think about,” said Rob Yost.

Kristy Foster Seachrist lives in Columbiana County raising sheep and horses with her husband, Kurt. She earned her degree from Youngstown State University and has worked in both print and broadcast journalism.
Kristy Foster Seachrist
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