Healthy soils can help farmers survive weather volatility

Healthy soils can help farmers survive weather volatility
Jerry Hatfield, left, and Chris Anderson discuss ways farmers can adjust their management to maintain yields during periods of volatile weather.

Chris Anderson tiptoes around the reasons why Iowa is experiencing more extreme weather events, preferring instead to focus on quantifying the changes and how farmers can react to maintain crop productivity.

"When you say the words ‘climate change,’ people tend to tune out," Anderson, a weather consultant for SkyDoc, said last week at the Iowa Farm Bureau annual meeting in Des Moines.

But unusual spring and summer rainfall patterns — either excessively wet or dry — are occurring much more frequently than they used to, he points out. For nearly a century, Iowa experienced an abnormally wet spring once every 10 ...

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