By Alex DeMetrick

The hot, dry summer took a toll on Maryland crops and Tuesday evening, the US Department of Agriculture  has declared much of the state a drought disaster. 

Alex DeMetrick reports that could mean low-interest loans for some farmers–but not most.

This past summer, early corn burned in the fields of much of Maryland.

“Corn took the hardest hit.  Heat is bad and dry weather is bad and when you have both, it’s a double whammy,” said Jim Miller, Kent County farmer.

The USDA found 22 Maryland counties met that threshold and qualify for low-interest disaster loans.  But other drought-resistant crops like soybeans could offset losses enough to put loans out of reach for many.

“Barley and wheat this year were probably average or better and soybeans, which has just been harvested here, there again, have been average or better crops,” George Parsons said.

Those who raise livestock may take the hardest hit, forced to buy more expensive feed this winter because not enough was harvested this summer.

Harford was the only Maryland county not declared a drought disaster area.


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