Wet year means extended stress for farmers

KELOLAND.com Original

With a record wet year, farmers aren’t expecting to harvest their crops anytime soon.

“When you get this much precipitation it makes harvesting nearly impossible to say the least,” South Dakota State University Extension Crop Production Associate, Jonathan Kleinjan, said.

Kleinjan also says harvest will be delayed or impossible until the ground freezes. The ground needs to freeze in order to be able to have the heavy machinery out on the land. He says frost would also be beneficial to help dry the crops, but if the frost comes before the crops mature that would be a major loss.

The crop progress report from the United States Department of Agriculture shows that crop harvesting is significantly down compared to last year at this time.

The only crops that are showing the same harvesting numbers are those that are not harvested in the Midwest, such as peanuts and cotton.


The Avera Farm and Rural Stress Hotline is averaging around two calls a day. These calls are coming from farmers, loved ones and even concerned community members.

Paige Thompson is a coordinator and in-patient therapist for the hotline. She says the hotline is starting to see not only families affected by the wet conditions, but small communities and businesses too.

“It is an unmatched time in our climate right now,”

Paige Thompson
Avera Farm & Rural Stress Hotline

Thompson says the hotline is helping people as far away as Kansas. She says depending on the weather conditions, the hotline will see varying trends of where their calls are coming in from. So far, the hotline has taken about 300 calls since February.

The line is open 24/7 and has licensed counselors trained in farm and rural stress. You can reach them at 1-800-691-4336.

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