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Dry But Not Drought In North Central KELOLAND

August 2, 2012, 9:57 PM by Erich Schaffhauser

Dry But Not Drought In North Central KELOLAND

As farmers in the south central part of KELOLAND say their corn is shot this year, farmers in the northern end of the state say their crops look healthy.

The areas of South Dakota not sitting in drought are limited but places such as Mobridge and Mound City are thankful to be among them.

"We've had lots of timely rains. In July I think we had about two and a half inches, two and a half to three inches and always timely and conditions are excellent," Ray Ritter said.

Those places are still abnormally dry according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor. But as some KELOLAND communities spent July turning brown, Mobridge received above average rain and it shows.

As he looks at area fields, Ritter says he'd expect a descent crop even if the rain quits coming.

"The corn I think has probably got it made with the moisture that we have. Beans of course are going to need some more," Ritter said. "But we'll be okay."

The drought monitor has sizable portions of three north central counties labeled dry but out of the drought category.

"We worry a lot when we start getting a little short of moisture and there were those times but the crops in this area never did show a lot of stress," Ritter said.

Ritter says, within the general north central South Dakota area rains have been spotty at times so some fields are looking healthier than others. But they're all far ahead of crops he's seen in the south.

"I feel bad for those people. They had a good one started but not going to harvest it," Ritter said.

And he doesn't have to travel that far to start running into some of those stressed crops.

Ritter was concerned about wheat because of hot weather during its development. But he says that crop also turned out well.

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