2017 Drought worse for some than others

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Reports are coming in tallying the damage from the 2017 drought, and it was worse for some than others.

Small grains, like wheat, really suffered because of how dry it was early on, but sunflowers and other later season crops were able to turn things around.

The rains were too late for these early season grains. But later row crops like sunflowers were able to hang on just long on enough.

"We had some nice rain in August and end of July and that just little bit of rain we got just really turned the crop around and turned into a great yield this year," said John Sandbakken, National Sunflower Association.

By the end of the sunflower season, some could hardly tell there was a drought.

"The actual yield only came out 80 pounds less than the year before. And actually if you look at the whole United States, and the bulk of the production here is in North and South Dakota, we had the third highest yield on record for sunflowers," said Sandbakken.

It wasn't the case for all farmers and now it's time to plan for 2018 with that in mind.

"What's happening right now is farmers are planning in the west to possibly uptick their spring wheat again, potential crops, because row crops struggled in the dry weather conditions," said Eugene Graner, Heartland Investors.

Sandbakken says he's being told by growers that some are planning on planting more sunflowers because of how resilient to drought the plant is.

The Agriculture Department reports soybean production in the state is down 4 percent from the previous year, with corn down 13 percent.