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Corn planters fire up; Major acres needed

  • 01

    The big USDA reports are out of the way and farmers are gearing up to start running full-bore with spring fieldwork and planting. See more on where the action stands and get more on this week's big stories in agriculture.

  • 04

    Are you planting yet? If not, don't worry; one expert said this week you don't necessarily want a big time gap in between field preparation and planting, especially after a warm winter like this last one.

  • 05

    Another consequence of the warm winter is greater potential for mold and disease issues in stored grain, one expert said this week. See how to best check for mold and what to do if you find a problem in your bins.

  • 06

    In some areas, though, the warm, mostly dry winter has unfolded into some worries as spring planting gets underway. Parts of Iowa and Nebraska are abnormally dry, causing farmers to wonder what kind of conditions in which they'll be starting their crops.

  • 07

    But, Nebraska and Iowa aren't the only places where it's been dry lately. Much of South America's crop ground was under severe drought this last season, and farmers are starting to see just how profoundly their soybean crop has been affected as harvest gets underway.

  • 08

    Back home, things are looking up in wheat country. Last year was a disaster for a lot of wheat farmers in the southern and central Plains. But, things are looking up on improved moisture, and that crop's advancing weeks ahead of normal.

  • 09

    So, what's all this weather mean for farmers moving forward? Ag meteorologist Craig Solberg looks at that topic in this week's Freese-Notis/Agriculture.com weather outlook.

  • 10

    Corn and beans didn't get all the headlines this week, though. A lot of cattle producers are busy with calving season right now, and Agriculture.com Cattle Talk contributors are sharing ideas to make a busy, hectic time a little easier. What's your best calving season tip?

  • 11

    The ethanol business got a jolt of life this week with the news that EPA approved 15% ethanol blends for fuel consumers. It's a move the industry's been after for years. How will it affect the industry moving forward?

  • 12

    Did you catch all of USDA's big reports last Friday? The prospective plantings report sent a clear message: The markets are going to really be watching corn and soybean planting and development weather, as well as major export partners like China.

The official start to Corn Belt spring planting & major acreage estimates top the last week's big ag stories.

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