By Clint Thompson
Peanut seed in the ground during last weekend’s cold snap probably didn’t make any progress coming out of the ground, says University of Georgia Cooperative Extension peanut specialist Scott Monfort.
“I expect no matter what, it slowed down anything that hadn’t come out of the ground yet,” Monfort said.
Concerns mounted last week over whether farmers should halt planting as temperatures dropped to the 40s and 50s, until warmer temps returned this week. Monfort cautions producers to travel to their fields and be diligent in checking to ensure the seed already planted is still close to germinating.
“The biggest thing is, I think these growers, consultants and agents need to get around and take a look at all of their planted acres for the ones that were planted last week and keep a watch on them. Check them, see if they’re beginning to germinate,” Monfort said. “Do they look alright? Are they going to rot? It’s better to start checking the seed in the soil now and make sure, versus waiting to see if they come up.”
Monfort said on Monday that growers made a “dent” in planting this year’s crop last week. He estimates that approximately 15% of Georgia’s crop is in the ground.
“Last week was the first real week we got going. A lot of people might have done more than that. I know they were wide open last week until the latter end,” Monfort said.
According to the UGA Peanut Production Guide, the ideal planting window is between late April and late May with respect to yield potential. While a good peanut crop can be grown outside of this planting window, there is a risk of reduced yield because of the weather and risk of disease problems.