Is there another drought in the works for 2014?
Fri, 09 May 2014 02:45:00 GMT —
"It was just different. I don't know if I can say 2012 or 2013...which one was worse? They were both pretty bad," said Zac Erwin of the University of Missouri Extension.
After the rainy seasons of 2009 through 2011, it hasn't been a good few years for farmers across the Heartland.
Then in 2012, the faucet turned off. The Midwest saw a historic drought no one could have ever predicted.
It was a good start to the farming season in 2013, but by summer there was no rain causing another drought.
The impact of it's damage to corn and soybean crops greatly affected both the farmers and the consumers.
"Everyone has to run on a profit. If we don't make a profit, it's pretty hard to go the next year so the last two years have been hard on us because we haven't had much crop to sell," said Farmer Chris Triplett.
Then came the winter of 2013/2014, which brought unusually dry and bitterly cold conditions to northeast Missouri and southeast Iowa, which left many farmers to worry if spring was ever going to come.
"We see a lot of mud in March and the first part of April. We just didn't have it. The worst part about it is we didn't get that rain to replenish that sub-soil moisture," Erwin said.
"We did have to wait for the ground to warm up. We like the temperature to be warmed up to 50 degrees for several hours everyday. We were a little worried," Triplett said.
Despite the late spring start, things have been looking up weather wise in the last few weeks.
"Temperatures are starting to warm up. We're getting a little bit of rain. Things aren't looking so bad right now, but we need the rain to continue to replenish that sub-soil moisture. It be nice to have that rain string out June, July, and August," Erwin said.
"We are not too worried about water until late July and Aug so as long as we get a few rains in the Spring to keep the top soil moist to get the crop up. We look pretty good," Triplett said.
With the weather patterns setting up for the summer are crossing their fingers for a great crop season and not a three-peat.
" We don't get too worried. Farmers are the ultimate optimists. We have to have a short memory and turn it over to the next year because we never know what the weather is going to bring. It's either going to be good or bad...whatever it is," Triplett said.
The recent crop-destroying droughts in the Midwest were part of the National Climate Assessment report released on Tuesday. The White House called for urgent action to combat climate change to prevent more droughts from happening.