Long Road to Midwest Drought Recovery

article image
Photo By Shutterstock/Condor 36
Crops struggle in Midwest from drought.

The Midwest suffered the worst drought in years last summer, and the soil has been suffering from drought conditions since early 2010. Now, a University of Missouri researcher says that it may take at least two years for crops and soil to recover.

Randall Miles, associate professor of soil science at the MU School of Natural Resources, found that soil in the Midwest is dry down to as deep as 5 feet, where the roots of the crops absorb moisture and nutrients.

“In order for the soil moisture to return to a normal state this year, the rain and snow would almost have to come continuously,” Miles says. “The weather would almost have to be like the precipitation found in London, coming down light and slowly to minimize runoff.”