MEQUON — Southeastern Wisconsin has seen some rain here and there since last Thursday, July 19th, when it was declared Wisconsin is under a “severe drought” status. Gov. Scott Walker has requested a federal disaster declaration for 23 Wisconsin counties due to the dry weather and the impact it’s having on farmers and crops. Farmers say despite some recent rainfall, it’s not enough.
Bill Prahl has been farming for many years and has seen a lot. He says 1988 is a year he clearly remembers.
“The 1988 drought was another bad, bad year. At that time, I had dairy cattle, and that was a really tough year. I had no hay, no feed, no nothing,” Prahl said.
Prahl says his corn crop is suffering due to the drought. Prahl does not have an irrigation system, and has to rely solely on Mother Nature to provide the rain his crops need.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture crop progress report says 43% of Wisconsin’s corn crop is in poor to very poor condition.
“Corn is at a stage in its life where it’s silking and pollinating, and if that doesn’t happen, all of the rain in the world, at some point won’t help it anymore,” said Washington County UW Extension Farm Business Educator, Alan Linnebur.
Prahl says despite the continuing lack of decent rainfall and the thousands he’s spent on fertilizer for his crops, he’s trying to stay positive.
“I take it the way it comes. There’s no sense in having your chin down to your ankle,” Prahl said.
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