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LSU AgCenter agents: Corn hardest hit by north Louisiana floods

Tammi Arender

Louisiana’s cropland has been annihilated by the floods. The LSU AgCenter says the recently planted corn crop appears to be the biggest agricultural loss.

LSU AgCenter corn specialist Dan Fromme says farmers had planted roughly 30,000 acres in an eight-parish area of north Louisiana before the torrential rains hit.

Whether or not the corn can be replanted is still uncertain. Corn seed and seedlings will suffer from being flooded because of the lack of oxygen in the waterlogged soil, according to Fromme.

LSU AgCenter economist Kurt Guidry said in a Monday news release if corn farmers have to replant almost two-thirds of the acreage now in the ground the cost would exceed $2.5 million.

Also, he said he’s received reports of several hundred head of cattle lost from the floods, and some of his colleagues are helping to move cattle to higher ground.

The head of LSU AgCenter’s Rice Research Station near Crowley Steve Linscombe said rice farmers who planned to drill-seed their crop are waiting for the soil to dry, but about 30 percent of the crops are already planted in south Louisiana.

Agents say if the wet ground keeps farmers out of the fields after mid-April, corn farmers will have to turn to other options, such as soybeans.

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