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Dry bean recommendations after flood damage in Michigan

A dry bean specialist says farmers impacted by excessive rain in Michigan need to work with their crop insurance agent before deciding to replant.

Greg Varner with the Michigan Dry Bean Research Board tells Brownfield a very small portion of the state’s dry bean acreage was left untouched by massive rains the past two weeks, but good genetics and field drainage has helped limit estimated damages to less than 20 percent.  “A lot of these dry bean varieties today will be able to take a lot more water damage and still recover, and at least salvage an average to a little bit below average yield.”

He says most losses occurred on a field by field basis and it might be more economical to manage the crop that’s in the ground.  “I personally would baby those fields and try to get all the yield out of them that you can.  That’s taking care of the weeds, taking care of any insects that might pop up, also, I’m recommending growers put some extra nitrogen fertilizer on these beans if they have a way to do it.”

Varner says Michigan’s growing season has about two months left to go and Mother Nature still has time to help farmers recover.

AUDIO: Interview with Greg Varner

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