NOBLE COUNTY, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - What a big difference a little water can make. There are some big disparities among area corn crops, and much of it can be attributed to irrigation.
Along U.S. 33 North, the growth of some corn crops has been stunted by the lack of rain, while others with irrigation systems flourish.
The cost of installing an irrigation system has proved to be a deterrent for some farmers. According to an article out of the University of Arkansas, the average cost of a well, pump, and power is about $25,000. Add a center pivot and the cost increased to about $75,000, the article goes on to say. That's not including maintenance costs.
On Tuesday, Michael Scuse, the Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Undersecretary, told Indiana's NewsCenter that farmers must consider what they typically produce without irrigation and how economically feasible an irrigation system is for their crops.
"They don't normally need irrigation," says Scuse. "They normally have very good growing years. This is an anomaly. There's one lady here who is 98 years young who said in her entire lifetime she's never seen a year like this."
Scuse says more and more vegetable farmers across the country are willing to pay a little more for a little piece of mind. For those farmers, the investment paid off during this year's drought.
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