Huntington Farmers Prepare Plan "B" In Aftermath Of Flooding

By Jeff Neumeyer

May 26, 2011 Updated May 26, 2011 at 5:42 PM EDT

HUNTINGTON, IN (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- Because of the persistent rains of late, many area farmers know more about growing "frustration", than growing crops.

Jeff Neumeyer traveled to Huntington County Thursday, where a number of fields are inundated by floodwaters.

Jeff Neumeyer: " Can you imagine trying to grow corn or beans on land completely underwater?

The owners of a field along U.S. 24 about four miles east of Roanoke haven't even tried to put seed in the ground, and it’s a good thing, since it would have been ruined anyway.

Jason Dennis looks on the sloppy mess with a degree of disgust, realizing he's getting behind the eight ball.

Jason Dennis/Huntington County Farmer: " We've got about 400 acres out of 6,200 in the ground. So, we need a break. Anytime after the June 1st date, you might as well just park your corn planters and start putting beans out. We just ordered a couple more thousand acres of soybeans to plant, so, we're gearing up, getting ready for when the weather does break."

Brandon Taylor/Huntington Co. Emergency Mgt.: " I don't know what the farmers are going to do. It’s just going to be a hard year for them."

In Huntington, homeowners living on a flooded section of Sunnydale Drive on the southside of town are nervously watching the skies, praying that they don't get hit with any more downpours.

Volunteers put down sandbags to guard seven of the most at-risk homes, including the one Mary Riggle lives in.

She says she'd never seen the water level on this street so high in the 52 years she's called this home.

3,000 sandbags have been filled and more sand is in a pile at the Huntington fairgrounds, waiting in case the situation worsens.

If it does, farmers who work river bottom ground may have to write 2011 off as a lost cause.

The Emergency Management director says Lake Claire on the northeast side of Huntington is now out of its banks, and that rising water levels are sparking inquiries about the availability of sandbags.




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