LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — The continuing drought has struck hard at Nebraska's winter wheat crop.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that in a survey of farmers so far in March, 61 percent of the wheat was rated poor or very poor. That compares with 4 percent rated poor or very poor last year at this time.
Executive director Royce Schaneman (SHAYE'-neh-muhn) of the Nebraska Wheat Board blames the arid conditions. He says the dry ground let farmers get fields planted with great dispatch last fall but didn't provide enough moisture to let much of the crop germinate and break through the soil.
Schaneman says the plants that did break through tended to be smaller and weaker than normal.