Farmers in southern Texas try to start planting in February to beat the hot weather, so the corn crop there is already mostly planted, says Del Massey, a Crop Production Product Specialist for Case IH. Massey covers parts of Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and the Bootheel region of Missouri.

Texas rice growers were held up a bit by rain but have 40-50 percent of rice planted so far. Some milo also is being planted, he reports

“Producers in Arkansas, Missouri and Tennessee are starting to plant corn, popcorn and rice,” says Massey. “Soybean planting is expected to start in late April or early May.

“In some parts of Texas water is being rationed, so that’s having an impact on what crops farmers are choosing to plant, especially in areas where rice is usually grown,” he continues.

Crop prices also are having an impact on what’s being planted, explains Massey. For example, in the Delta region, it’s anticipated not as much corn will be planted as in previous years. Instead, growers will likely shift back to growing cotton and rice, because those prices have held their own.