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Agri-Line - Le Mars Agricultural Connection

Spring Produce Could Be Bountiful

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says growers are hopeful for a bountiful crop of spring produce that could begin showing up at farmers markets soon.
Northey says a cool spring delayed the crop a bit, but the weather has improved and timely spring rain and the lack of a killing frost could produce a big harvest.
Produce such as strawberries, asparagus and rhubarb is beginning to become available, and later crops such as radishes, carrots, green beans and leafy greens should be harvested soon.
The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship's website lists the state's farmers markets as well as farm stands and many farms where people can buy produce. Go to , and click on Data Searches and Directories on the bottom right side of the page.


Climatologist Says Planting Will Be Delayed Due To Cold, Wet Spring

(Le Mars) -- You can't help but scratch your head and wonder when will spring finally arrive?  Although the moisture from this past week is perhaps appreciated, obviously, Mother Nature is playing a cruel late April Fools joke by producing the late season snows.  Iowa State University Extension Climatologist, Elwynn Taylor says it may be at least two more weeks, or more, before temperatures warm up to near normal levels.

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Normally at this time of year, farmers would be in their fields planting the new corn crop. Since it will be a while until farmers can get to their fields, will that hurt the corn production in the long run?

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The ISU extension climatologist says although records show earlier planting usually performs better, he says the soil temperatures need to be at or above 50 degrees for a sustained period of time to help with the development of the seed.  Taylor says records have proven as the spring progresses, it normally becomes wetter, which may be another factor determining when farmers will be able to plant this year's corn crop.  Taylor says this past winter and colder than normal spring reminds him of the conditions similar to 1947.

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Taylor says Iowa farmers have had three straight years of below trend-line yields, and he believes the odds are in favor for a fourth year for below trend-line yields.


Farm Rescue Expands

Farm Rescue Foundation Expands

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The founder of Farm Rescue has launched a separate foundation to further his cause of helping farmers stricken by major illnesses, ailments or disasters.
Farm Rescue helps farmers in the Dakotas, Minnesota, Iowa and eastern Montana with planting and harvesting. Founder and CEO Bill Gross says the new Farm Rescue Foundation will help farmers in the
recovery process with specialized equipment, or with some farm tasks they're unable to do.
Langdon farmer Brett Kakela (KAK'-uh-luh) is recovering from a stroke. The foundation helped him get equipment that will enable him to unload grain without having to climb out of his truck. He
says he appreciates the help.
The foundation aims to help about 20 farmers in North Dakota this spring and expand to the other four states this fall.


Iowa Corn Growers Help Set National Policy

JOHNSTON, Iowa - March 1, 2013 - Iowa corn farmers joined with other corn farmer members from twenty-six states representing the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) at the annual Commodity Classic meeting in Kissimmee, Florida today.

NCGA farmer delegates discussed issues related to crop insurance, tax issues, farmer confidentiality, as well as farm image, sustainability and environment. The delegate body adopted several resolutions that Iowa Corn Growers Association (ICGA) members brought forth through the grassroots policy making process.

"This is the culmination of our grassroots policy development process. Starting with our local roundtable meetings, to our Annual Meeting, and now onto National policy in Corn Congress at Commodity Classic, this is how our grassroots members help develop national policy," said Bruce Rohwer, a farmer from Paullina, Iowa and the current president of the ICGA. "Iowa farmers are here to be part of the process to develop policy positions of interest to Iowa corn farmers."

Additional NCGA policy discussions will take place on Saturday afternoon. "With the drought conditions last year, we saw crop insurance work," said Rohwer. "Grain farmers didn't require an ad hoc disaster assistance bill, even with last year's extreme weather conditions, as we have seen happen in the past. Our task at Commodity Classic is to make sure we have and maintain sound policy for Iowa's corn farmers."

The new NCGA policy document will be posted at when it becomes available. For more information on upcoming summer policy development meetings in your area, contact the Iowa Corn Growers Association at (515) 225-9242 or by email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
The ICGA is a membership organization, lobbying on agricultural issues on behalf of its nearly 7,000 farmer members. For more information or to view the complete policy position book, log onto

The Commodity Classic is the premier convention and trade show of the US corn, soybean, sorghum, and wheat industries. Each year, the industry gathers at Commodity Classic to experience, learn and share information about issues, technology, and trends in US agriculture.


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