PLAIN CITY, OH (WCMH) — Farmers in Madison and Union counties are way ahead of planting schedule this year.
Fueled by the unusually warm weather, farmers were able to take advantage one of the strangest Spring season in Ohio.
However, cooler temperatures and heavy rains this week might dampen the progress made with all the early work.
With the help of GPS computerized planting programs, farmers are able to ensure that each bag of seed, which costs about $300, doesn’t go to waste.
The GPS program allows farmers to place the precise amount of seed per acre in the field, after the ground temperatures reach at least 50 degrees.
“This GPS technology has helped in so many ways. It makes it so much more efficient. I can plant all night if I want to,” said Plain City farmer Fred Yoder.
Farmers are also using more cover crop to protect the land and soils and reduce the flow of nutrients into streams that contribute to blooms of toxic algae.
Before technology, farmers relied on almanacs for planting dates. Here in Ohio, our average latest freeze occurs in early May; our average first freeze in the fall in mid-October. And that gives us about 175 growing days in central Ohio