Heavy rain floods Osseo farm fields damaging crops and planting - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Heavy rain floods Osseo farm fields damaging crops and planting progress


Osseo (WQOW) -- Farmers across the state battled heavy rain as they struggled to plant crops and salvage flooded farm fields. 

Shane Goplin of HV Acres LLC in Osseo said his farm made good progress last week before the storms. 

"We've got a lot of our corn and beans in the ground, and we have our new-seeding alfalfa in the ground, and then Mother Nature kind of took a turn on Monday night," Goplin said. "She kind of went all out on us." 

Goplin said 7 inches of rain poured down within 30 hours. 

"Spring is the most risk we have of any time of the year for a major weather event like this," Goplin said. "It's been a rough spring, no doubt about it."

Some of his fields that were planted with pride now look like ponds as the seeds are germinating.

"The field has been underwater for about the last 30 hours now, so next week we are going to come back and reevaluate and look at the fields once we can get in them a little bit more to see how much damage has been done," Goplin said. 

The rushing water also cut paths in his hillsides, possibly washing seed down the field. 
"Yesterday was probably one of the worst days I've had for a couple of years," Goplin said. "There's countless farmers throughout the Midwest that have spend all sorts of time and energy and money investing in the future of our crops. To see a weather event like this come through, it's disheartening."

Goplin is working with agronomists and seed companies to see if he needs to replant, which could cost him a lot of green. 

"A typical corn field, we are looking at $500-600 an acre for costs. With everything in the alfalfa fields, we are looking at $400-500 an acre too with the fertilizer and time and energy it takes to prepare these," Goplin said. 

HV Acres LLC is anxiously waiting for fields to dry, so the farm can finish planting corn and soybeans, start spraying crops, and begin harvesting first crop alfalfa that will be ready to go next week. Despite the storms, Goplin has a growing hope for his harvest in the fall. 

"You've got to move on and salvage what you have," Goplin said. "We're fortunate enough that it is the middle of May versus the middle of June, so there is time to replant if we have to." 

HV Acres LLC plans to have nearly 2,000 acres of corn, 700 acres of soybeans and 500 acres of alfalfa. Goplin said they sell the feed to the dairy farm across the road.

The USDA Crop Progress Report released on Monday said this is a problem across the state. The report said corn planting is eight days behind last year. Soybeans are a week behind last year, and oats are five days behind compared to 2016. That report was released before weather took a turn for the worse keeping farmers from their fields. 

Despite all of the slow planting progress, Goplin said it has not affected crop prices and probably will not have much of an impact because farmers are competing in a global market. In fact, Goplin said soybean prices were down 20 cents on Thursday because of politics in Brazil. 

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