Iowa Public Television


Drought Worsens in Plains, Despite Cooler Temps

posted on August 24, 2012

ST. LOUIS (AP) — While other corn growers already have cut down their drought-ravaged crops to feed to livestock, Nebraska farmer Doug Nelson still waits for his maize to mature, well aware it won't be a banner year.

On the day a new report suggested the nation's worst dry spell in at least a generation is deepening in America's breadbasket, Nelson said Thursday that he expects to harvest anywhere from nothing to 43 bushels per acre on his land, a far cry from the 120 to 140 bushels he'd typically get. On irrigated land in previous years, Nelson would see a minimum of 180 bushels.

The U.S. Drought Monitor's weekly map showed that, as of Tuesday, just over two-thirds of Iowa, the nation's biggest corn producer, was in extreme or exceptional drought — the worst two classifications. That's up more than 5 percentage points from the previous week.

Tags: corn drought midwest