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Drought Improves Land for some Farmers Submitted: 04/13/2012
Antigo - The nation dealt with record breaking warmth last month, and is now facing record levels of drought.

Forty-eight of fifty states in the nation are currently experiencing some sort of drought conditions covering 60 percent of the entire United States, seen here on this map.

The deeper reds in West Texas, Georgia, and Florida represent areas beyond extreme and referred to as exceptional.

While Northern Wisconsin falls under abnormally dry conditions, the lowest level of drought, behind by 2-4 inches seen here in the yellow. Some farmers in the state say the conditions are just right. "In our area where we farm with heavier soil here, we're not really on sand, we always prefer a dry spring. The old timers always told us, 'Plant in dust and get good crop'."

For Tom Wild and other farmers across the state, the unusual warmth and dry conditions has allowed them to get out tilling earlier than seasons before. "This is probably as early as I remember. We've had some neighbors, old timers, that have told me they remember having all of the grain in(the ground) only once in their life before April. That would be extremely early, we are a little behind that here this year, but this is early."

In fact, farmers have already tilled 20 percent of their lands here in Wisconsin. Compared to only 1 percent by this time last year.

While Wild is able to get out 2-3 weeks early this year, he's still cautious about what the weather will hold in the future. "We prefer a dry start because if we start planting in mud, when we compact the soil and get a lot of lumps, we know we've taken some potential out of the crop. We just have to deal with the weather that comes along after that. Like I say, we're 120 days away from seeing what our crops are going to end up with."

Written By: Ryan Michaels

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