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Ukraine Must Replant at Least Half of its Grains, Center Says

Ukraine will need to replant at least half of its winter grains after frosts this week destroyed plants, said Tetiana Adamenko, the head of the agro-meteorology department at the national weather center.

Soil temperatures dropped to minus 20 degrees Celsius (minus 4 Fahrenheit) for more than two days in the Dnipropetrovsk region, where 44 percent of grains failed to emerge in the autumn drought, Adamenko said in a phone interview in the capital Kiev today.

“Where there was no snow, there will be no plants,” Adamenko said, adding she’s concerned more than half of the sprouted grains will need re-seeding.

Ukraine’s Agriculture Ministry estimated about 8.4 million hectares (21 million acres) of winter grains, most of which was wheat, was planted for the 2012 harvest. About 7 million hectares had sprouted as of Jan. 26 and 1.9 million hectares had plants in good condition.

The winter grain plants that sprouted were in a weak condition after the worst autumn drought in at least 50 years, Adamenko said.

The lowest temperature this winter has been minus 36 degrees Celsius in the Crimean Peninsula, she said. Winds removed snow from many fields and made the protective cover uneven in almost all of the Dnipropetrovsk, Kherson, Odessa and Mykolayiv regions and in a large part of Vinnytsya, according to the meteorologist.

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