Western Kansas wheat failing just when the world needs it most

Of all the years for drought to hit western Kansas wheat farmers, it couldn’t have come at a worse time.


State News

June 14, 2022 - 4:00 PM

Western Kansas farmer Vance Ehmke holds two heads of wheat, one that developed in spite of the drought and one that died. Kansas News Service/David Condos

LANE COUNTY, Kansas — This time of year, the wheat growing in this part of western Kansas should be thigh-high and lush green.

But as a months-long drought continues to parch the region, many fields tell a different story.

“There’s nothing out there. It’s dead,” farmer Vance Ehmke said, surveying a wheat field near his land in Lane County. “It’s just ankle-high straw.”

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