Life on the farm isn’t always rainbows and sunshine, in fact, we would really prefer a lot more sun and less rain. It seems like it has rained every day since the beginning of spring. I know that isn’t the case but it sure does feel like it from the farmer perspective. I found this article: #NoPlant19: Unrelenting rain forces Midwest farmers to make a painful choice—plant or wait until next year and found it very interesting because we are faced with the same situation. Every year we not only raise feed for our animals such as grains for our pigs and chickens, but we also raise some cash crops. Cash crops are different grains that we raise for the sole purpose of selling them. The money we make from these crops keep our farm going and help us cover fuel costs of the necessary equipment repairs needed to plant and harvest food for our animals.
This year, we have been hammered with rain and flooding. Our tractors have had a difficult time getting the fields ready to plant, often times getting stuck when trying to plow or disk. Plus, in order to plant, the ground has to be very dry. We just haven’t had enough days in a row without rain to make that happen. The farming term “hurry up and wait” is in full swing on our farm as we are hurrying around while waiting for the weather to cooperate.
About a week ago, we had a crazy early morning storm where it felt like the rain was being slammed into the ground. There was flooding everywhere! Many farmers who had been able to plant, were now left with fields that looked like lakes because there was so much water. Many in our town had rain gauges that measured 4+ inches of rain in about a 3 hour time frame. Now that is a LOT of rain! We even had multiple roads cave in. Our road was one of them! Our farm is located on a 2 mile dirt road and during that intense storm, the culvert to the right of our driveway broke and the road completely washed out and washed away down the creek. It is so crazy how powerful rain and rushing water can be. This storm did so much damage in such a short time. Our family took a drive to survey the damage and to make sure our neighbors were all safe. We saw countless houses and garages surrounded by water. Our ground has already been so saturated with water that there wasn’t anywhere for it to go. Luckily, things have dried out a bit. They still haven’t fixed the road but the fields no longer look like lakes but they are still too wet to plant.
The planting window is quickly closing and we don’t know what we will do yet. We are praying we are able to get enough planted for food for our animals and we are leaving the rest up to God. Keep the farmers in the Midwest in your thoughts and prayers as we band together to find hope in the wet times.