WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Early season heat and no outlook for substantial rain make for a bleak outlook for some farmers.
“We are so dry,” said Brian Mitchell with MitFarms of western Kansas. “And it’s been, I think somebody said 200 and some days since we’ve had any precipitation even over a quarter of an inch.”
Mitfarms is concerned with the drought in parts of western Kansas, coupled with a lot of heat early in the month of May.
“Normally, we plant several thousand acres of irrigated corn,” said Mitchell. “But with the price of inputs, it’s gone crazy. With the drought and everything this year, we are going to switch to milo.”
Mitchell already has a lot of wheat in the ground, and it’s not good.
“We always know we are one day away from a rain, but we just want to know if we’re halfway there or not,” said Mitchell. “Wheat and our dryland wheat’s gone. We’ve got some irrigated circles of wheat, but we’re putting water on it, and it’s just so dry. You put the water on, and it’s going to be, barely, a decent dryland crop.”
And with costs on the rise, Mitchell says irrigation doesn’t make a lot of sense this year.
They use natural gas at MitFarms to power the irrigation pivots.
“We will see,” said Mitchell. “We are not the only ones. This is not a perfect year.”