South Sioux City farmers dealing with hailstorm damage and drought
SOUTH SIOUX CITY, NE (KTIV) -
Corn production in Nebraska increased by 6 percent in 2015, setting new records for the state.
But local farmers are struggling to produce higher yields due to weather concerns.
The damage from last week's hailstorm can still be seen in North East Nebraska. Taylor Nelson says 50% of his corn crop was destroyed but he's hoping for the best.
"On the top of the plants there is new leaf tissue that is growing that is not damaged and so those will come along and help the plant the rest of the way through the season. The ones that are damaged are going to be limited to what they can do to help," said Taylor Nelson, Corn Farmer.
Nelson, a fifth generation corn farmer says it's too early to tell what, if any hail damaged corn will be salvageable.
Along with hail storm damage for some Nebraska Farms, overall Nebraska farmers are dealing with overall drought.
Nelson is able to irrigate some of his stalks and they have grown 8-9 feet tall. But for the corn not irrigated, depending on mother nature and dealing with the drought, they have only grown 3-4 feet tall.
"Prices are low, there has been localized drought stress in Nebraska, some areas are irrigated but there are a lot of areas that are struggling and a lot of farmers that are struggling right now and so it's tough times and guys are working hard to get through it," continues Nelson.
Nelson farms is able to keep his product local, goes to Siouxland Ethanol in Jackson. He produces corn strictly for ethanol.
Nebraska ranks third in corn production in the country, Iowa is number one.