Jason Fagle’s farm near Midway stretches to just under 200 acres, 100 of which were growing corn before the derecho flattened all but 4 acres.
As the farmer works to mitigate the damage and salvage what he can from the Aug. 10 storm, all he can hope is that the drought that’s progressed across Iowa this summer keeps things dry a little longer.
As unusual as it seems for a farmer to hope for a little more drought, this has been a most unusual season as growers have tried to cope first with the dryness and then with the derecho.
In August, the U.S. Department of Agriculture declared a drought disaster for a large swath of western Iowa, now making farmers in 31 counties eligible for aid.
The drought has only gotten worse since then. As of Sept. 1 the U.S. Drought Monitor, which maps the locations and severity of dry conditions across the country, reported that 99.4 percent of Iowa was under some sort of dry spell, from abnormally dry weather to extreme drought.
Currently almost half of the state is…
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