As severe spring weather begins to recede throughout the United States, farmers in North Dakota and across the plains are worried about the long-term ramifications of the heavy rains and flooding. The severe weather prevented crop planting and damaged valuable cropland. While many parts of the Midwest are now recovering, with Midwestern farmers planting record corn crops, large parts of North Dakota are still facing an uphill struggle.
While the rains may have subsided, countless acres of prime farmland are still submerged across North Dakota. Current estimates place about 6.5 million acres of land underwater or damaged by the rain. The inability to seed land due to excessive moisture and flooding has many farmers worried, particularly because of the short weather window for planting later in the year.
In addition, many farmers are worried because their situation does not fit neatly into current disaster relief programs. Currently, five counties have been approved for disaster funding. However, many prevented planting programs are geared towards droughts rather than excessive moisture, leaving many farmers in a sort of limbo regarding their losses.
While some farmers are worried about red tape, others are worried about the long-term damage that could be done to flooded land. Until the waters recede, it won’t be possible to fully estimate the financial damage done by the rains. Until then, state officials have urged farmers to contact their local Farm Service Agency.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer