A Deluge, But Not A Total Disaster

The corn on Gary L. Sandrock's 1,000 acres along the Green and Rock Rivers near Rock Falls in northwestern Illinois is usually waist-high this time of year. His soybeans should be thriving, too. But thanks to the worst flooding of the Mississippi River Valley in almost three decades, about 15% of Sandrock's land hasn't even been planted yet, and a seventh of his planted acreage could suffer reduced yields from water damage. Now, with the July 15 cutoff date for planting soybeans fast approaching, Sandrock's hopes of salvaging his flooded fields by sowing later-blooming beans may be crushed by continued rainfall. "Farming is always risky," says Sandrock, "but now we've got some real problems."

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