Spring is around the corner and with it the urge to start up the tractor and ready the soil for this season’s crop. The scene is set this year for an early spring too, which just may have a number of farmers looking to get their crops planted early.
But, while farmers are itching to get their planter setup ready to go, they should think about holding back on putting their soybeans in the ground until the recommended time.
“University of Minnesota (UMN) research supports the fact that there is no appreciable gain in yield to planting soybeans much before May 1,” said UMN Ag Business Management Extension Educator Gary Hachfeld. “Furthermore, planting soybeans early in April carries a risk of early frost. Soybeans are very susceptible to early frost, much more than corn.”
Hachfeld points out that agronomy risks are not the only reason farmers should hold back. He reminds farmers that planting a crop before the earliest planting date voids their insurance and provisions.
The earliest planting date for soybeans for most of Minnesota is April 21 this year. Producers planting before then have forfeited the replant provision in their crop insurance policy. It is important to keep an eye on other crop insurance dates, as well. Hachfeld said missing a reporting date or failing to notify your crop insurance agent in a timely manner regarding a loss can jeopardize your insurance coverage.
Many are also anticipating tight margins again this year. This makes it even riskier for farmers to plant soybeans early. That is also why crossing every “t” and dotting every “i” becomes even more important, which includes utilizing crop insurance coverage to help scratch out a profit.
Hachfeld also said it is important to talk to crop insurance agents and utilize tools available. He recommends the Illinois State University insurance calculator for future decisions.
Here are some other important federal crop insurance dates for soybeans in Minnesota:
- Final Planting Date – June 10
- Acreage Reporting Date – June 30
- Production Reporting Date – April 29
- Final Notice of Crop Damage Date – production loss within 72 hours of initial discovery of damage. Revenue loss not later than 45 days after harvest price released.
For more dates and crop insurance information, see Hachfeld’s report.