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Upper Midwest farmers can expect delay in preparing crop fields

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - The long winter is doing no favors for Wisconsin farmers who'd like to get fields ready for their summer crops.

USDA meteorologist Brad Rippey says parts of the Upper Midwest can expect delays due to what he calls "almost historic frost depths" that are still down to six feet in some places. As Rippey puts it, "Soils are just not going to warm up ... not going to be conducive to any early field work."  

He tells the Brownfield Ag News Service that the eastern one-third to one-half of the nation will be affected by a cooler and wetter spring. Rippey also says the crop planting in the South is behind schedule for the same reasons.

In Wisconsin, it's a little warmer Tuesday morning than it was Monday, when temperatures were down to 20-below in parts of the north. Superior was the cold spot at 4 a.m. at seven-above. Southern Wisconsin is generally in the low to mid-20's.

It's not supposed to get much warmer Tuesday. Nobody in the Badger State is expected to see 30 degrees, at a time when normal highs are in the 40's.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)