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Spring Rain, Flooding Wreaking Havoc On Roads, Farms

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WAVERLY (WCCO) — Water woes aren’t getting any better for some Minnesota farmers and lake residents.

In a normal year on his Locke Lake home, Loren Hafterson’s boats would be out of storage and in the water. But it’s anything but a normal year.

“Being raised here in 50s I don’t ever remember water being as high and consecutively, since we moved here in 2010,” Hafterson said.

The water is so high it’s running over roads, keeping many from summer’s pleasures.

But they are problems that pale compared to the plight of water-logged farmers. In Wright County, fields are saturated and working them is impossible.

“You wouldn’t make it 50 feet into some of the lower spots, it’s just horrible,” Wright County farmer Blake Klinkner said.

Klinkner’s farm is a major hay supplier. He needs dry weather to cut and bale, or it turns moldy and you can’t sell it.

“Can’t feed it to horses, cows barely like it. It’s just not good,” Klinkner said.

Farmers from here to South Dakota see water where they should have rows of corn and beans. Many fields are simply too wet to plant.

Crops that did sprout have shallow roots and won’t do well.

“Problem is roots don’t go down deep, so if it gets dry in July the crops will suffer too because the root system is not developed,” John Deere dealer Dan Domjahn said.

Implement dealers are hearing it every day, too. Farmers worried about making green when skies are constantly turning black.

“We had probably a couple of two-day spans when we could get into the fields, not much time to plant your fields,” Klinkner said.

For those lucky enough to get crops planted before the May deadline, crop insurance may help, but many never got in their fields to plant due to the rain.

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