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Flooding destroys wheat crop for some Reno County farmers

Published: Jun. 19, 2019 at 4:46 PM CDT
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In Reno County, some fields are so damaged from flooding, it could take decades to repair.

Fields that should have been planted with wheat won't yield a crop this summer because up until a few days ago, thy were underwater. Fields are unplanted because as flood waters receded, they left sand behind and took precious topsoil with them.

Jane Gamber says her family has farmed its Reno County land for generations. This year, there's not a crop left to harvest.

"You know, it's just like our garden. If you try to grow your garden on sand, it's not going to grow. So you go in and buy topsoil or potting soil to give it the soil it needs," Gamber says.

She says a series of floods all but completely stripped her family's fields of that topsoil that allows for the ground to produce crops.

Gamber isn't alone.

Whether it's missing topsoil, flooded fields, or ruined crops, she says Reno County farmers have taken a big hit this season.

"Each one of us is kind of locked into our own situation right now, trying to get control and repair things damaged by the flood" she says.

While some crops can be replanted, Gamber says a bigger issue is having something to plant them in.

"We can work it up, but to get it back to the growing potential is way beyond us," she says. "It's going to be a long, long time. Obviously you take a hit like this and you kind of have to get started against to see what your next move is."