South Dakota Farmers Switch Seeds to Beat Winter Frost

SIOUX FALLS, SD— “This is the by far the worst I’ve seen in 16 years,” said Corey Strom, Red Horse crop insurance specialist.

56 percent of South Dakota farmers have not been able to plant corn this season, which has led many to take alternative options.

“When we have a year like this and the farmers cannot get acres planted. They will go with a program called ‘Prevent Plant,’ which is a crop insurance program,” said Jim Field, Mustang Seeds interim sales manager.

This requires farmers to throw in the towel on the season, which many do grudgingly.

Strom explains, “A lot of years they don’t rely on it. They pay the premium and don’t collect anything on it which is what they would rather do. They would rather get a crop. But, this year is definitely going to show it’s weight in gold to have insurance for the safety net.”

Farmers still have the option of producing corn that matures in 90 days.

But if they choose to give up, they can still protect their soil with “cover crop,” which is their last alternative.

“Cover crop is crazy demand is extremely high and supply is getting a little shorter,” said Field. “There really isn’t any after cover crops. They will go to ‘summer fallow’ and sometimes that’s not the best alternative.”

The last plant date for corn farmers was May 31st, but they still have 25 days after that to plant crops.

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