Ah, it's April in South Dakota. And that means spring, right? And that, in turn, means planting season can't be that far off.

Farm folk and town folk. They're as different as night and day, right?

Nope. And especially not when it comes to planting season.

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Oh, I know I know, farmers will have acres and acres and more acres. Their town counterparts will have feet and feet and feet. But in a lot of ways, they're looking at essentially the same things and (hopefully) the same result.

The people at SD Corn helped me understand how that could be, how the farmers and the townies are actually on the same page.

For example, whether you're out in the field or out in the garden, you want that sun to shine, right? The crop folks have it all day (some days) while the gardeners need it 6 to 8 hours (again, some days).

Farmers need the right kind of soil and yep, so do them town garden folks. Adding organic matter helps both and healthier soil works out great out there and in here!

Seed? Well, while the rural farmer buys a whole lot more than their town counterpart, they both purchase it from reliable sources. One gets bulk, the other gets the bag. But hey, seed is seed.

As far as tillage, farmers use a whole bunch of different practices, and yes, the townsfolk plow, rototill or maybe just do some spading. But it's all tillage nonetheless.

And while we mentioned the sun, let's not forget rain. Farmers depend on good 'ol Mother Nature, with some help from irrigation maybe. In town? Bring out the hose or sprinkler if you need to, 1-1 1/2 inches per week is about right. Kind of your smaller version of that irrigation.

Oh, there's things like nutrients and weed/pest control too that both need to be aware of, you can get all the details here.

Bottom line: Those of us on the farm and those of us in town may think we don't have all that much in common but you don't need to dig (or plant!) too deep to discover that we do!

Life on a Cattle Ranch in Western South Dakota

Life is different out in the country. One look at the photo from Robin Bickel and you quickly realize that a workday is quite different as well, after all, she lives out west in South Dakota Cattle Country.

Robin Bickel took time to tell KIKN Country a little bit about her life out west and life as a woman, working outdoors with animals and nature in God's Country. Bickel lives and works on a cattle ranch operated by herself, her father, Jack, and his brother Keith. How far out in the country is she? How does 50 miles west of Mobridge, South Dakota sound? Yep, mountain time out there.

Life is so different in Sioux Falls, South Dakota compared to what our friends on the farm and ranches deal with. It's a half-mile to the grocery store for our family. For Robin, it's 17 miles. However, it's a quick step out her door and she's right in the middle of where a lot of the groceries come from.


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