MnDOT encourages farmers to join Standing Corn Rows program

Published 8:30 am Friday, April 20, 2018

The Minnesota Department of Transportation has invited farmers to consider leaving standing corn rows to help control blowing and drifting snow on state highways next winter.

MnDOT pays farmers to leave standing corn rows, hay bales or silage bags to protect selected state roads. Farmers are compensated on a per acre basis for leaving standing corn rows and a per lineal foot basis for strategically stacked bales or silage bags.

A typical standing corn row treatment is about a quarter-mile long and one acre in size, with 12 rows of corn left standing. Average compensation to the landowner is about $1,000 per acre for a winter season of blowing snow control protection.

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These “living snow fences” can be designed and constructed to fit into individual land use and farming operations. Ears of corn are allowed to be harvested by families, clubs, organizations and church groups.

“Standing corn rows provide a unique opportunity to use a resource that is currently being grown adjacent to our highways to provide blowing snow control,” said Dan Gullickson, MnDOT’s snow control program coordinator, in a press release. “Farmers play a key role in helping MnDOT quickly deliver preventative snow control treatments while reducing MnDOT’s snow and ice removal costs.”

Farmers and landowners who want more information about the standing corn row program can contact their local MnDOT district office.

Local contact information can be found at Additional information about the program is at or contact Gullickson directly at or 651-366-3610.