Corn growers recover from hail storm - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Corn growers recover from hail storm

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NASHUA (KWWL) -

Even though standing in his field you can barely see him through the corn, Dan Dietz sees a lot of crop damage.

"Sure enough, it was a bad hail storm," Dietz, who farms near Nashua, said. "You couldn't see 20 yards outside."

He lost about a third of his crop to hail. He said in 23 years of farming, it's never been this bad.

"You can see the hail actually beat this stalk and knocked it right over, broke it off," he said.

Though the stalks are still standing, the damage is evident.

"Here it has been ripped back severely," Dietz said, holding a broken stalk. "He's probably missing half his leaf here. It's just been shredded."

The late-season storm means it's too late to re-plant. Dietz isn't alone, either. Fields across the KWWL viewing area were torn up by hail.

"There's really nothing you can do about it but collect insurance," Dietz said.

He said hail damage can cause problems down the road. When leaves are damaged, more sunlight reaches the ground, encouraging weed growth. Fungus can also attack stalks through hail bruises, allowing fungus to corrupt the plant.

"It will fall over," Dietz said.

So he's hoping these storms stay away for a while.

"It was probably my turn," he said. "One year out of 23, I think I did alright."

But still, a hit to his yields is a hit to his bottom line.

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