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massive floods in the US, deaths of livestock, farmers going bankrupt--what to do? Grow more food

 
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Here on permies, we're all about focusing on solutions to problems. Today my heart is breaking for the devastation in the eastern half of the US. I had no idea how bad it was. Here's some quotes:


From CNN: Historic, widespread flooding will continue through May, NOAA says  

"This is shaping up to be a potentially unprecedented flood season, with more than 200 million people at risk for flooding in their communities," said Ed Clark, director of NOAA's National Water Center in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

NOAA's outlook calls for nearly two-thirds of the lower 48 states to face an elevated risk of flooding through May, with the potential for major to moderate flooding in 25 states across the Great Plains, Midwest and down through the Mississippi River valley.



From New York Times: ‘It’s Probably Over for Us’: Record Flooding Pummels Midwest When Farmers Can Least Afford It

VERDIGRE, Neb. — Ice chunks the size of small cars ripped through barns and farmhouses. Baby calves were swept into freezing floodwaters, washing up dead along the banks of swollen rivers. Farm fields were now lakes.

The record floods that have pummeled the Midwest are inflicting a devastating toll on farmers and ranchers at a moment when they can least afford it, raising fears that this natural disaster will become a breaking point for farms weighed down by falling incomes, rising bankruptcies...

...Farms filing for Chapter 12 bankruptcy protection rose by 19 percent last year across the Midwest, the highest level in a decade, according to data compiled by the American Farm Bureau. Now, many of those farmers have lost their livestock and livelihoods.



From CBS: Midwest flood damage will likely total more than $1 billion

One reason for the lack of coverage is that federal flood maps are woefully outdated. Many residents in states like Nebraska are unaware they even need this type of insurance. "These outdated maps do not reflect real estate development and the climate change that is producing more intense storms," said Robert Hunter, director of insurance at the Consumer Federation of America. "By allowing developers to do whatever they want, almost every community acts in ways that delay implementation of new maps."

Such an approach could end up hurting not only Nebraskans, but consumers all across the country. That's because they'll have to pay more for food, particularly meat. Prices for hogs and cattle rose Wednesday on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Agriculture contributes more than $25 billion to Nebraska's economy, and the state ranks fourth in the nation in meat production. But many herds have been almost completely obliterated. And it will be impossible to get the remaining cattle and hogs to market until impassable roads and bridges are repaired. Nebraska's Governor Pete Ricketts described the damage as the most widespread in the state's history.




It's horrible not just for those people, but for all those who will buying food this coming year. With flooding until May (one can't drive tractors and plant seeds on soggy fields, right? And most crops you want in the ground in May, right?), and so many livestock dead, and farmers going bankrupt, I cannot help but think this will be a horrible year for food prices and supply.

Sometimes the effects of climate change and conventional agriculture and urban sprawl causing flooding and intense storms seem too much to find solutions to. But, at the very least, those that have the ability to plant more, can go out there and plant! I know I'd been thinking about whether or not to build another garden bed for more potatoes. Tomorrow I will do so. The food I grow is food I can share, and food we can eat, and food I don't have to buy and that equals more food for others to buy.

And, the little slice of permaculture that is my land, also helps combat against climate change, and the food I grow equals food that didn't get grown and moved with fossil fuels that fuel the climate change. I may not be able to do much, but I can do something.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote: I may not be able to do much, but I can do something.



I'm trying very hard to live my life by that idea right there.
 
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Terrible stuff in Nebraska recently. One side of state they were digging cows out of snow. The other side lost them to floods.
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I'm in Wyoming and a rancher friend of mine said they lost about 50 cows to this snow storm. We didn't get it quite as bad as Nebraska but even still....
 
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I'm planting a LOT more than I planned to at this rental. And trying to casually get my neighbors to also, without using the words  "synergistic resilience" even though I want to. Several neighbors have been told to pick what they want from my garden, and one lady has been offered seeds to plant at her house, she has a raised planter.  I'm pleased, the neighbor who keeps a meticulous yard says I can put climbing things up the chainlink fence between us (I think it's legally his.) Glad he doesn't mind, that's about 75-80 feet of 4 foot tall fence :D Lots of things climb fences!

Got some guerilla gardening planned too, there's a big graveyard behind the house, and they don't use all of their land, and the brush is messy in one area. Seminole pumpkins and asst winter squash will climb that mess, I suspect! :D  I won't know until fall what makes it, but it might be a nice surprise.

If anyone stocks food, it's worth checking your stocks.... I have several 50 pound bags of stuff to package up tomorrow, just because I can afford it right now, and might want it later.

My father always used the term CYA (Cover Your Ass) and it's part of my philosophy of life. Might be useful this year.
 
Nicole Alderman
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Nicole Alderman wrote:I know I'd been thinking about whether or not to build another garden bed for more potatoes. Tomorrow I will do so. The food I grow is food I can share, and food we can eat, and food I don't have to buy and that equals more food for others to buy.  



Motivated by this bed, I finished--and we seeded--my daughter's garden bed, and I made the frame of a Ruth Stout-style potato bed.

Every little bit helps.

(total aside, I'm pretty sure I'm the queen of weird garden bed boarders. Almost every bed I've made is made differently...)
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My daughter's garden bed, seeded with radishes, beets, carrots, nasturtiums, and lettuce of her choosing
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cherry tree died. Potatoes will take its place!
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:


It's horrible not just for those people, but for all those who will buying food this coming year. With flooding until May (one can't drive tractors and plant seeds on soggy fields, right? And most crops you want in the ground in May, right?), and so many livestock dead, and farmers going bankrupt, I cannot help but think this will be a horrible year for food prices and supply.

Sometimes the effects of climate change and conventional agriculture and urban sprawl causing flooding and intense storms seem too much to find solutions to. But, at the very least, those that have the ability to plant more, can go out there and plant! I know I'd been thinking about whether or not to build another garden bed for more potatoes. Tomorrow I will do so. The food I grow is food I can share, and food we can eat, and food I don't have to buy and that equals more food for others to buy.

And, the little slice of permaculture that is my land, also helps combat against climate change, and the food I grow equals food that didn't get grown and moved with fossil fuels that fuel the climate change. I may not be able to do much, but I can do something.



I'm grateful that you brought this up at this time of year. It's perfect, since there's still plenty of time to plan practical gardens. I think potatoes are a great choice. Corn will be another good one. This year I've been focusing on getting people to put more trees in the ground in my area (food trees mostly) in hopes that we'd have more time before climate change would really impact food prices. I had actually planned on scaling back my garden this year to focus on establishing trees.

I’ve been hearing more and more about food getting stolen from farms and gardens. It’s a little exhausting since many of us are already doing so much, but I guess it’s time to redouble our efforts on outreach etc.


Nicole, have you had the chance to plant any nut trees yet?
 
Pearl Sutton
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The current predicted flooding map from NOAA:

The link to the site Spring Flood Outlook

And this link if you aren't familiar with it, shows current conditions. Current flood gauges you can zoom in on your area, useful map.

I have no idea if that map has been all over the mainstream news etc, as I don't watch it. Apologies if it's something that has been spread all over already.
 
Pearl Sutton
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James Landreth wrote:

I'm grateful that you brought this up at this time of year. It's perfect, since there's still plenty of time to plan practical gardens. I think potatoes are a great choice. Corn will be another good one.


Squash, zucchini etc are notorious for producing large amounts. As far as sheer volume of per square foot, it's hard to beat zucchini. Sweet potato are high production too, and the leaves are really tasty edible greens.

I’ve been hearing more and more about food getting stolen from farms and gardens. It’s a little exhausting since many of us are already doing so much, but I guess it’s time to redouble our efforts on outreach etc.


I hadn't heard that, thank you. That's part of the synergistic resilience thing to me. It's not hard to put in more than we can use. Non-hungry neighbors are an asset to have around.
The close neighbors I haven't talked to about this yet is two houses, grandparents in one, mom and 2 boys (10 and 12 year old) in the other. The boys are great, nice kids, I think they might be able to be roped into helping with this, and I know the grandparents and mom will be happy if the prices go up to be able to pick what they need. I want my neighbors to be well fed, it helps us all.
 
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I am interested in Mark Shepard's farm. He is definitely in the high but not severe flood zone. He's about in the center of the picture.

This is when people start getting interested. I get some ag mags and they were beating the bankruptcy drum last summer already. That and the aging farmer problem means land will change hands. Much of what is considered marginal will not be worth big ags time or money. I would predict this is a very good time to move on your plans if you have been waiting.
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Nicole Alderman
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James Landreth wrote:This year I've been focusing on getting people to put more trees in the ground in my area (food trees mostly) in hopes that we'd have more time before climate change would really impact food prices. I had actually planned on scaling back my garden this year to focus on establishing trees.

Nicole, have you had the chance to plant any nut trees yet?




I have! My husband planted a black walnut seed a few years back and last year I planted 3 chestnuts and 3 hazelnuts, and I planted another chestnut this year. With my 5 acres being north-facing, it's hard to plant a lot of canopy trees, because they mean no sun in the winter, as they shade everything down hill. But, I planted the chestnuts along the forest edge, and the hazelnuts should do well any where. I was hesitant about investing in nut trees because the squirrels ate every single hazelnut from my mom's three trees, but I don't have nearly as many squirrels, so hopefully we'll get some nuts eventually! Nest year I hope to get some more hazelnuts and plant them in my hedges. The more diversity, the better!

As for other trees, I've got 8 apple, 2 peach, 2 pear, 3 cherry, 3 pawpaw, 1 cultivated plum and at least 5 that suckered of of my mom's tree, and 1 persimmon (pretty sure it died) tree.
 
James Landreth
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Nicole Alderman wrote:

I have! My husband planted a black walnut seed a few years back and last year I planted 3 chestnuts and 3 hazelnuts, and I planted another chestnut this year. With my 5 acres being north-facing, it's hard to plant a lot of canopy trees, because they mean no sun in the winter, as they shade everything down hill. But, I planted the chestnuts along the forest edge, and the hazelnuts should do well any where. I was hesitant about investing in nut trees because the squirrels ate every single hazelnut from my mom's three trees, but I don't have nearly as many squirrels, so hopefully we'll get some nuts eventually! Nest year I hope to get some more hazelnuts and plant them in my hedges. The more diversity, the better!

As for other trees, I've got 8 apple, 2 peach, 2 pear, 3 cherry, 3 pawpaw, 1 cultivated plum and at least 5 that suckered of of my mom's tree, and 1 persimmon (pretty sure it died) tree.



That's a great start! I worry about squirrels down the line, but I figure that it's good to have the nut trees in place so that if things ever fall apart, we can just get serious about squirrel hunting and have those nut trees in place

I wonder how commercial agriculture in California is faring. I haven't read much in this regard. I imagine that the fires and drought have to have had some sort of negative effect, though this winter has seen more rain. That might lead to new growth and renewed fire tornadoes this summer. We've already had brush fires this month in the Pacific Northwest, which is unusual. The snow pack is good I hear, but we haven't had as much rain as usual I feel
 
James Landreth
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Pearl Sutton wrote:

I have no idea if that map has been all over the mainstream news etc, as I don't watch it. Apologies if it's something that has been spread all over already.



I feel exactly the same a lot of the time, not being on social media or watching mainstream news much haha
 
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Technically we're not in the flood zone but close to the edge. A new lake has formed in the valley below. Roughly 300-500 acres. Maybe more that is out of view. Road is closed. Several houses & about ten acres of hay field & a beautiful horse pasture have been under water for two months. Less than a mile from home as the crow flies. Slightly further via the road. Fire department was pumping it out but they eventually gave up. People who have lived here their entire lives have never seen it flood like this. Not exactly sure where that water came from but it sure is good to live on top of the ridge rather than below.

I keep some bees further up in the mountains, right on the official flood zone edge. That property has a medium sized river that receives a lot of snow & spring runoff every year. We didn't get much snow this year but it rained hard for months. That river was raging but has subsided to normal spring levels now. Still way too much flow to consider moving the cows across to their summer pasture. That is challenging enough even without drowning.

So ... getting to the point ... I was reading some similar news articles a few days ago. Didn't realize how bad it was until then. Scary stuff. Billions of stored grains destroyed. With a B. That's hard to comprehend. That is severe enough even without the ruined infrastructure & dead animals & massive soil erosion adding to the situation. I came to the same conclusion as Trace. In the grand scheme of things I can't do much but I can do something. Was already in the process of expanding gardens but now I'm ramping up as much as possible without the use of machinery. It's very tempting to use heavy machinery to grow a hillbilly $^% ton of food for the local masses but that would just help perpetuate the problems. Will concentrate on feeding some elderly neighbors & young friends. I see this as a golden opportunity to teach a few hungry folks to grow their own foods & to provide for their families a better way. Grocery stores are convenient. I trust backyard gardens more. The next couple years is an opportune time to reintroduce the Victory garden concept & introduce food forests & good land stewardship to a wider audience.

If WE don't seize the moment big ag will. You can bet they already have teams of lawyers & accountants working on it. I'll be in the outdoor office today. Moving cow pies into the hugelhole & figuring out where to put a few more trees. The original homesteader here planted some chestnut & pecan & hickory trees for us 120 years ago. I'm working mostly on fruits for future generations.
 
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I think the Victory Garden thing, and the teaching of people who can get out there and, with the right instruction, do a little garden work and yield food for themselves, is going to be more impactful than straight-up feeding people, although that's a laudible thing to do for those who can't do for themselves.

As they say, "Give a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he's warm for the rest of his life."

Or was the fishing one more appropriate?

-CK
 
Pearl Sutton
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Chris Kott wrote:I think the Victory Garden thing, and the teaching of people who can get out there and, with the right instruction, do a little garden work and yield food for themselves, is going to be more impactful than straight-up feeding people, although that's a laudible thing to do for those who can't do for themselves.

As they say, "Give a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he's warm for the rest of his life."

Or was the fishing one more appropriate?



If the way you are setting them on fire is by teaching them something that excites them, and changes their life, it's VERY appropriate :D
I think THAT is what we need to be doing. Firing up their imagination, opening their minds to possibilities beyond what they hear on the news.  

(but I admit I giggled at the inappropriate version :D That one has always amused me. )
 
Pearl Sutton
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I made a meme :) Pass it around, post it anywhere. I have the files if someone wants better text or resolution.

 
Nicole Alderman
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I made a tutorial for growing potatoes the easy way (which also supplies you with a lovely garden bed to grow anything in the next year https://permies.com/t/108411/Favorite-easy-ways-garden-beds).

Today we worked on a trellis to grow our kiwis, and to give us shade during our increasingly hotter summers. I've been having to water all my seeds every day, because it's been consistently above 60 degrees F and sunny and dry...that's our normal JUNE (or July) weather, not March! Our winter was fall, and our February and March was Winter, and then it went straight to summer, having skipped our normal months of drizzly/cloudy weather in the 50s. There's already been 49 forest/brush fires this year. What is going on out there!?!?
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:give us shade during our increasingly hotter summers.



I'm going to try growing Moringa as a summer tree crop to shade the kitchen garden.  Supposedly it can freeze to the ground during winter and then grow back up to 15 feet in a season. We'll see!

 
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Thank you people! We are having the same problem here with massive floods in the east. It is easy to feel overwhelmed.  You give me hope
 
Pearl Sutton
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Mike Barkley
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Now that water is further downstream & causing more problems. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/31/us/midwest-floods-levees.html Not good news.
 
Nicole Alderman
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I just saw this article: Blockbuster blizzard could impact states hit by "bomb cyclone" weeks ago

Over the past few days, various forecast computer models have shown a blizzard of epic proportions for the north-central Plain States and Upper Midwest. Every time a model is updated, the storm depicted seems to get even more intense. At this point, it seems likely that some of the same areas impacted by devastating flooding just weeks ago are about to get slammed by an historic blizzard Wednesday through Friday.

....

The storm will intensify as it enters the central Great Plains on Wednesday. The barometric pressure — a measure of intensity in which lower means stronger — may drop to levels nearly as low as during the record-setting bomb cyclone in mid-March. In fact, this storm could tie or set April low pressure records.





This is just horrible.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Rumor has hamburger at 5.00 a pound in Tennessee.

I'm holding on my planting till this storm is past, I'm right on the edge of the current snow prediction, but they keep moving it.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:

This is just horrible.



We feel a bit fortunate to be where the light blue and brown bands interface, being outside of the main hammerhead of the approaching storm.  That would be pretty devastating on top of what is happening locally with the 'above-normal' flooding right now >>>

The first photo shows the Red River 'stretching its legs' in downtown Fargo....ironically the the tent-shaped roof to the right houses a replica (built locally) of a Viking ship,....homage to the Scandinavian immigrants to the area.  

The second photo is primarily the result of 'overland flooding'....not so much a river backing up or running out of its banks as noted in the caption, but more the result of too much snow over too wide and too flat an area just melting too fast for the current partitioned landscape to handle.  At our own property, we still have 3-4 ft deep snow drifts, probably the last of which will disappear in early May.

Edited to add, the only thing missing from the third photo is a tornado warning!...
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Chris Kott
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It never rains, but it pours...

I saw this a couple of days ago, and had similar feelings. My only blood relations in the states are in the texas hill country, but I hope all my permies family are safe and out of the way.

-CK
 
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I'm guessing this random cow in the corn patch is not part of the solution. No brand, no ear tag, no driver's license. Wasn't one of ours. It just showed up & stayed all day. I ran it out of the gardens (several times) because it took a long while to determine the owner.

Heard a few minutes ago that it escaped again today. With a second cow this time. Sigh.
 
elle sagenev
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They cancelled school in my district for this snow already. Here we go again. Saw countless calves being born yesterday. Bet they're all going to die today.
 
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We just moved to Southern Oregon and the rain is finally breaking. We have had flood warnings for the Rogue River for days. The creek that runs alongside our road has been flooding. Our property is fine, we are fairly high.

When we were looking at properties, I would ask about flooding, the realtor assured me that flooding wasn't a problem in Southern Oregon. Thankfully, I didn't believe him. I think that anywhere with water has the potential for flooding.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Guerilla Gardening in the Graveyard
What I did with my Sunday...
Squash and chard!! For humans or animals. Maybe distract the animals from my garden.

Abundance for all is my goal, and I'm doing it!
 
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It's the first weekend in May, and this is still ongoing in the Midwest. I'm in Southern Missouri, and we have had no time to dry out. The soil is totally waterlogged. All of the creeks and rivers are in overflow, the lakes have got to be a mess, I know I know they have the dams shut to try to take the strain off the Mississippi River.  I just checked the forecast for next week "the heaviest rains will be Tuesday through Thursday..."  You may have seen the news of tornadoes going through, they don't mention the 6 inches of rain in about 2 hours, adding to the already soaked ground.

I have a bunch of plants that want to go in the ground who aren't there yet, I have a tractor I can't move due to mud. I'm not alone in this, and I'm not a big farmer, who depends on their tractor and trucks and such to do all of their work. I hate to think what they are dealing with. The roads are still washing out, anyplace that was bare soil is eroding badly.

If you don't have a garden going, get one started, doesn't matter how half assed. Dig a hole just big enough to put squash seeds in, put bell pepper or tomato plants in between your foundation plantings. You don't have to have a full tilled up garden bed for a lot of crops, anything is better than zero. You might be REALLY glad in a couple of months that you have done so.


Pay attention, y'all, this ain't being pretty, and it ain't over.


.
 
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I believe the main thing to do in these type situations is to just relax. Floods and rain and snow and big winds and dry spells are called weather. It happens. It's tough on that farmer there, it has benefits to other farmers over here. It sucks to be in the middle of it, but it will pass. Everything will be just fine. You'll see. It's a very big continent and the sky is not falling.
 
James Landreth
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Pearl Sutton wrote:It's the first weekend in May, and this is still ongoing in the Midwest. I'm in Southern Missouri, and we have had no time to dry out. The soil is totally waterlogged. All of the creeks and rivers are in overflow, the lakes have got to be a mess, I know I know they have the dams shut to try to take the strain off the Mississippi River.  I just checked the forecast for next week "the heaviest rains will be Tuesday through Thursday..."  You may have seen the news of tornadoes going through, they don't mention the 6 inches of rain in about 2 hours, adding to the already soaked ground.

I have a bunch of plants that want to go in the ground who aren't there yet, I have a tractor I can't move due to mud. I'm not alone in this, and I'm not a big farmer, who depends on their tractor and trucks and such to do all of their work. I hate to think what they are dealing with. The roads are still washing out, anyplace that was bare soil is eroding badly.

If you don't have a garden going, get one started, doesn't matter how half assed. Dig a hole just big enough to put squash seeds in, put bell pepper or tomato plants in between your foundation plantings. You don't have to have a full tilled up garden bed for a lot of crops, anything is better than zero. You might be REALLY glad in a couple of months that you have done so.


Pay attention, y'all, this ain't being pretty, and it ain't over.


.



Thank you for posting this Pearl. I show this thread to people to galvanize them into taking action and understanding the direness of the situation. This post helped me get support for a community food forest today. Thank you.


This is not a localized situation. These extreme weather events are happening everywhere, and that's what makes it dangerous. Drought and fire have ravaged our farmland in California and the inland Northwest. The Midwest produces an enormous amount of food for this country and is usually regarded as being agriculturally stable. Farming in the southeast has been severely damaged by floods and hurricanes. This nation's food can't come from nowhere, and we're not set up to produce it locally and resiliently yet. Pearl and many others who posted here are productively calling people to action in a realistic and hands on way, and I appreciate that.

 
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I'm in Central Mo, on the North side of the Ozarks, in between a couple of the 'humps'. We're starting to have some concerns about the dams, around here. Even those of us higher up, on the ridges (We are at 1,000ft) are concerned about flash flooding & washed out roads, supply line interruptions, municipal service interruptions, etc.

Our little rock farm has, so far, only seen real hits, in the way of watching one side of our driveway develop a ditch, running down it, as the rocks make their way down the hill, to the pond. Our focus has been shifting from 'get 'em in the ground', to 'stock up on everything & shore up the driveway'. Hubs is heading out for a music festival, with his daughter, and we have both chicks & a replacement coop (the builders brought the wrong one, the first time) due in, within 24 - 48hrs, after he leaves. It's supposed to rain the entire week he's gone. Those chicks? They're staying in the house, with me. I *might* be able to get the (20) asparagus crowns, (2) blueberry bushes, (1) elderberry bush, (12) pineapple sage, (1) lilacs, & (1) rose of Sharon in - I might not. My health issues combined with the rain may force me to prioritize. I'm not looking forward to this, but those festival tickets were EXPENSIVE, and nonrefundable. And, I wouldn't, for the world, have him miss this time with his daughter - even if he has to whitewater raft his way back down to the house, from the top of the ridge!

So, If you're the praying kind, send up a prayer for me, please?
 
James Landreth
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Carla Burke wrote:

So, If you're the praying kind, send up a prayer for me, please?




I'll be sure to, Carla!


Here's an example of what I was talking about. I just came across this:
https://abcnews.go.com/amp/US/record-flooding-continues-midwest-south-deal-severe-storms/story?id=62798481

Meanwhile, we here in the Pacific Northwest had a historically dry and cold spring, with a rare cold snap that got low enough around here to freeze back leaf buds on trees. And we will probably have a bad drought and fire season this summer considering all these factors. Hay farming and harvest has been particularly badly hit by these past several years of volatility
 
Carla Burke
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Thank you!
@James - Yeh... Far more worried about those areas, immediately, to be sure! We're (thankfully!) not seeing that, yet. But, the dams are a bit of a concern, here - and we had 3.5inches, just on one day, last week. I think it was Wednesday or Thursday? This dam ( https://www.lakeexpo.com/boating/the_lake/truman-dam-rated-potentially-unsafe-in-new-engineering-study/article_a68ae274-3f93-11e9-b736-dfcc886fcec1.html ) was inspected recently, and some possible overflow concerns were found, at that time. Our pond is higher than we've seen it, by about a foot, several inches of that have come, just in the last week. It would just be one more big chunk of the state - and adding to the flooding already happening, downstream.
 
Pearl Sutton
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I haven't been to the grocery store in quite a while, this was up in the produce section. It's been there since January, it looks like. This is what was going on BEFORE it started flooding. Add the flooding to it, and it isn't getting better soon.

 
Nicole Alderman
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Trouble could be brewing for farmers in the US Corn Belt


Illinois, Minnesota, Indiana and South Dakota are the four states significantly behind schedule and expected to remain that way, according to AccuWeather meteorologists who have been analyzing the data. Those four states combined produce nearly 40% of the corn in the U.S. If the weather continues a wet pattern through late May, consumer prices could go up this summer.

Iowa and Nebraska, the other two states among the top six corn producers, are only slightly behind, according to data from the USDA.

“The question will be how much farther it will fall behind the pace,” said AccuWeather senior meteorologist Jason Nicholls. “It’s about a week behind schedule right now. If it were to go to a week and a half or two weeks, that’s big news.”

.....

By this time of year, 43% of corn crops would already be planted in Illinois, according to the five-year average provided by the USDA. However, just 9% has been planted so far. Iowa averages 26% of crops planted at this point, and 21% has been planted so far.

Three of the other top corn producers are lagging behind this season so far. Minnesota (2% of corn crops planted by now compared to its five-year average of 24%), Indiana (2% compared to 17%) and South Dakota (0% compared to 17%) are also well off pace.



I'd like to say that probably 30% of America's calories come from corn. I'd love to see real numbers on that. Even though most permies don't eat as much corn as the general consumer, this is a big hit to food prices. We're also the largest producer of corn for the world. Yikes.

"It was just too wet this week for there to be a national catch-up,” Nicholls said. “Most of the corn should be in the ground by May 15 in the South and by June 1 in the North. After those dates you start to risk losing significant yield.

“We think one of the weeks in late May will end up being drier, maybe at the end of the month,” Nicholls added. “But the week of May 6-12 looks pretty wet and May 13-19 doesn’t look good either.”



I'm sure corn isn't the only crop they can't plant, either!
 
Chris Kott
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I am pretty sure that most of the processed industrial waste they market as food is made from corn, and all the factory-farmed beef that should be out grazing on pasture are also fed corn.

Is it naive to hope that its only the shit we really don't want to be eating anyways that will have issues?

-CK
 
James Landreth
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Nicole Alderman wrote:

I'd like to say that probably 30% of America's calories come from corn. I'd love to see real numbers on that. Even though most permies don't eat as much corn as the general consumer, this is a big hit to food prices. We're also the largest producer of corn for the world. Yikes.

I'm sure corn isn't the only crop they can't plant, either!




That's true, and we export a lot of it too.

I have a couple of friends who garden or shop at the farmers market. A lot of them think they'll be unaffected, because they think their shopping habits or small kitchen gardens will insulate them from the price pain. But if overall supply of food goes down, prices will rise for everything as people move into substitutes and remaining producers realize they can charge more.

Nicole, I know you're very busy, but is there anywhere up where you are that would be interested in a community food forest? I could get the plants donated. I've already begun working on a couple of projects here. I think I have a rough idea of where you live in the state (you mysterious gal you!). I have a sister in Bellingham and could drop them off on the way to her in the summer or fall

 
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permaculture bootcamp - learn permaculture through a little hard work
https://permies.com/wiki/bootcamp
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