Clark Co. soybean farmer braces for potentially destructive cold

Photo: WKYT/Adam Burniston
Photo: WKYT/Adam Burniston(WKYT)
Published: May. 8, 2020 at 2:55 PM EDT
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Brennan Gilkinson comes from a generation of farmers. He plants about 2,400 acres of crops each year, and now many of his fields are under threat as a hard freeze moves in.

With growing season in full swing, Gilkinson says he was out in April getting his fields planted with corn and soybeans that he rotates most years.

In his soybean fields, small sprouts are already coming out of the ground, but with temperatures in the 20s in the forecast, these are likely to get damaged.

Gilkinson says, while he is concerned for all of his crops, typically soybeans are more susceptible to the cold.

“Once the bean is frozen or killed it will not start back,” he says. “A corn plant has what we call a growing point. For a period of time, it will stay underneath the ground and if it were to get eaten off by a cow or get frozen off on this instance, it can come back.”

Fortunately for Gilkinson, he does have crop insurance so that should cover his fields if they get damaged by this hard freeze or if he has significantly lower yields come harvest.

Gilkinson says he is also concerned about the coming harvest as market prices still remain low from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.