- Associated Press - Monday, April 21, 2014

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska farmers are just beginning to plant their spring crops, but the U.S. Agriculture Department says conditions remain dry across a large part of the state.

The USDA says much of western Nebraska continues to experience severe drought.

And only about 46 percent of the state’s topsoil and 39 percent of its subsoil has adequate or surplus moisture.

The USDA estimates that 59 percent of Nebraska’s winter wheat is in good or excellent shape.

About 4 percent of the corn crop has been planted, which is a bit behind the average of 6 percent at this point in the year.